• Over $80 billion investment opportunities in power sector
  • Saudi Arabia is making huge investment in energy sector
  • FDI is pouring as multiple companies have shown their interest to invest

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Power Division Omar Ayub Khan said Monday Pakistani power sector including generation, transmission and up-gradation has over $80 billion investment opportunities and foreign direct investment was pouring as multiple companies have shown their interest to invest.

Addressing the five-day inaugural training programme for professionals of Afghanistan on Pakistan's Power Regulatory regime organized by National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NRPRA), on the request of SAARC Energy Center (SEC) here, he said the government has planned to increase installed capacity of power generation to 42,000 MW by 2030.

The generation side alone has investment opportunity of $40 billion besides $20 billion in transmission market of the country, he added.

He said Saudi Arabia was making huge investment in energy sector including setting up 500 MW solar plant in Balochistan besides petrochemical complex and oil refinery.

Welcoming the delegates from Afghanistan, the minister said cooperation in sector with each other would not only bring peace but also prosperity to the whole region.

He said there also dire need to further strengthen the platform on South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).

He also appreciated NEPRA for arranging the training session and its role in facilitating the power sector.

He stressed the need to be proactive especially when technological changes were happening at a fast pace.

He said draft of new Renewable Energy (RE) was ready to take maximum benefit from sources of RE. As per the plan, the share of RE would be enhanced to 20 per cent of total energy mix by 2025 and 30 per cent by 2030.

Other indigenous resources including hydel, coal and nuclear were also being exploited to complete change the current energy mix 60 per cent from imported fuel and 40 per cent from local resources, he added.

He said cost of RE was going down which would ultimately benefit the consumers. The socioeconomic condition of people would also improve by bringing improvement in power production sector, he said.

Omar Ayub said special focus was being given to net-metering and wheeling in the new policy. China Pakistan Economic Corridor was not only important for the development of Pakistan but also to the entire region, he added.

He said under CPEC, special economic zones were being set up which would reduce cost of doing business.

Omar Ayub said as many as 26,000 MW electricity would be transmitted in next summer.

Lamenting the role played by India in the occupied Kashmir, the minister said it was very egotistical on the part of Modi to crush Kashmir's genuine demand for freedom and that Pakistan firmly stood with Kashmiri people.

He said Indian atrocities in the occupied Kashmir would not be tolerated at any cost.

Earlier, Chairman NEPRA Tauseef H. Farooqi while welcoming the minister, distinguished guests and the Afghan delegates highlighted the mission and vision of NEPRA.

The chairman expressed the hope that the Afghan delegates would gain valuable knowledge for disposing off their responsibilities as a regulator and that both the nations would continue to exchange knowledge and skills in future.

He also shared his future vision for NEPRA. He stressed the professionals to focus on integrity, accountability, energy, justice and honesty while dispensing with their responsibilities.

SAARC Energy Centre (SAC) Executive Director Muhammad Naeem Malik,  highlighted the role of  SAARC Energy Centre and said SAC would continue to facilitate exchange of knowledge with SAARC member countries. He thanked NEPRA for designing and arranging the training program.

It is pertinent to mention here that NEPRA is hosting a five day training program for Professionals of Afghanistan on Pakistan's Power Regulatory regime, on the request of SAARC Energy Center (SEC), Islamabad.

The purpose of the program is to exchange knowledge and impart the experience and lessons learnt by Pakistan's regulatory professionals to the Afghan delegates.