Zardari directs ministries for efforts to end load shedding
03 September, 2012
KARACHI: President Asif Ali Zardari on Sunday urged the ministries of Petroleum, Finance and Water and Power to work in unison and take concerted and coordinated steps to end electricity and gas load shedding in the country.
"The government can no more afford persistent load shedding as it is adversely impacting the country's economy," he said while chairing a meeting at the Bilawal House to review the current energy situation and progress on various measures being taken to overcome the power shortage in the country.
Zardari directed to be regularly updated about the power situation, and noted that the government accorded high priority to improving the energy situation.
Minister for Water and Power Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar briefed the meeting about the latest power situation in the country and said that the various immediate measures taken by the government had resulted in reducing the supply-demand gap.
He informed the meeting that the power situation was steadily improving and expressed hope that with the rising water levels in reservoirs and the recent rainfalls, the situation would further improve.
WAPDA Chairman Shakeel Durrani briefed the meeting on various hydropower projects, including Allai Khwar (Battagram), Jinnah Hydropower (Mianwali), Gomal Zam Dam (South Waziristan Agency), Satpara Dam (Skardu), Duber Khwar (Kohistan), Jabban Hydropower (Malakand) and Laraib Hydel Power Plant, which had a total capacity of 487MW and would be inducted in the national grid by March 2013.
The meeting was informed that Tarbela Dam was likely to be filled soon while Mangla Dam had been filled to a level of over 1,180 feet against a level of 1,230 feet. The progress in the construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam and the efforts being made to garner finances for the project were also discussed in the meeting.
Adviser to PM on Petroleum Dr Asim Hussain briefed the meeting about the availability of gas and fuel for the power generation.
Those present in the meeting were Minister for Water and Power Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar, Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Adviser to PM on Petroleum Dr Asim Hussain, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Secretary General M Salman Faruqui, Finance Secretary Abdul Wajid Rana, Water and Power Secretary Zafar Mehmood, Petroleum Secretary Dr Waqar Masood, WAPDA Chairman Shakeel Durrani and other senior officials of relevant departments.