ISLAMABAD: Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar said on Friday that Iran has normalised electricity supply to bordering areas of Balochistan.
“I am grateful to the ambassador of Iran in Pakistan for promptly accepting my request and normalising the flow of electricity to Makran Division,” said Hammad Azhar, in a statement.
Pakistan and Iran have an agreement, according to which, the latter has to supply 100MW of electricity to Makran Division but due to Iran’s own electricity shortages, it has suspended electricity. The minister further stated that, in the meanwhile, the government is also bringing forward the timelines of the project that seeks to connect bordering areas of Balochistan to the national grid. “Work is also in progress on connecting these areas with the national grid. This involves laying transmission lines for hundreds of kilometers. This project will be completed within two years,” he added.
On July 29, 2021, Azhar telephoned Iran’s ambassador to Pakistan and sought his help to restore electricity to Gwadar, Turbat, and Makran Division.
According to Azhar, power shortfalls in Iran have led to load shedding in Gwadar, Turbat, and Makran regions, adding that these areas are not connected to the national grid and dependent upon Iranian power supply.
On July 28, President Gwadar Chamber of Commerce and Industry informed the Senate Standing Committee on Power that Gwadar’s business activities have reached a standstill due to non-availability of electricity. He added that fishing in the seas has also been stopped as ice is not available for the fishermen.
The Balochistan Chief Minister, Jam Kamal Khan, has also written a letter to the Prime Minister, Imran Khan, for resolving the current electricity crisis of Makran Division, comprising three districts, ie, Kech, Panjgur, and Gwadar.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021