Conference urges govt to resolve power crisis on war footing basis

May 28, 2013 Off By Web Desk

KARACHI: The experts at the roundtable conference on “Energy crisis and its Solution” urged upon the government to devise a comprehensive policy to overcome severe energy crisis and load shedding across the country.

The roundtable meeting called by President, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry FPCCI Zubair Ahmed Malik has asked the government to resolve the energy issue on war footing basis as it was haunting the people and industry badly. He said that as a short term measure the power generation companies should be released fund immediately and then resolve the issue of circular debts once for all. Zubair Malik said that the recommendations and proposals for the short, medium and long term solution of the energy crisis have been obtained by the apex body of the trade and industry and would soon be submitted to the newly elected government to take an immediate and serious stance towards the issue.

He said that the all relevant quarters are not even definite about the power generation capacity of existing plants in the country and frequently quoting the figure 23,000 mega watts which is misnomer as many plants have gone old and their generation is depleting. He said that the rampant corruption by the previous governments and mismanagement in the bureaucracy has resulted into severe crisis of power shortage and the nation is facing the brunt of inefficiencies of the policymakers. He even blamed on private sector for doing nothing but to exploit the situation as many so-called investors have acquired hundreds or acres land some years back for setting up wind energy turbines but did nothing. Vice President FPCCI, Gulzar Firoz suggested that government should declare working and business hours from 8:00 a. m to 4:00 p. m. in order to conserve energy.

He further suggested the government to ban marriage halls from wasting electricity through illumination and order them to close down by 10 pm Eng MA Jabbar said that the interim government has failed to handle the situation due to which the energy crisis has even worsened. He said that only releasing funds to IPPs is not the solution as the elected government would have to resolve this issue once for all and come out of this vicious circle.

He pointed out that many plants in public and private sector are running under capacity. He recommended withdrawing gas supply from inefficient and old fertilizers plants and this gas should be diverted to power plants to run the industry. He said that the country still have another 630 mmcfd gas to be added into the system. Khurram Saeed suggested short, medium and long-term solution for the ongoing crisis. He said that 1,000 MW electricity could be acquired from Iran immediately while India too has offered to sell electricity in short period of time.

He said that government should make arrangements importing LNG in order to overcome gas shortage in the country. Prof Nasim A Khan has also termed the corruption and inefficiency as the major cause of energy crisis saying that during previous regime as many as 5 to 6 ministers and secretaries have been changed and transferred and they all came up with their flopped policies.

The experts including Eng Anwarul Haq Siddiqui, Dr Yaqub Chughtai, Prof Nasim A Khan, Eng Kishore Kumar Sharma, Azhar Ayub,
Hadi Khan Sarwar Ahmed, Siddique Shaikh, Rukhsana Jahangir, Zakria Usman and Asghar Morawala have submitted their papers suggesting overcoming energy crisis. They termed the energy crisis as a consequence to the rampant corruption and criminal negligence by the previous regimes and said that in case any other country it could be a case of treason against those who
Remained helm of the affairs. They said that mega projects including Kala Bagh Dam have been politicized and no work has been done in generating hydel power which is the cheapest and most feasible energy source for Pakistan.