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ISLAMABAD: Ministry of Energy (Power Division), already facing serious problems, has unofficially been allotted to Minister of State, BNP-Mengal’s Hashim Notezai.

The notification of his appointment as Minister of State for Power has not yet been issued yet he visited Power Division on Friday and reportedly saw the office of Minister of State, informed sources told Business Recorder.

There was speculation in the federal capital that Shahid Khaqan Abbasi would be offered the slot of Minister of Energy as he has relevant experience; however, he declined the post but indicated that he would assist the Prime Minister whenever asked.

The Ministry of Energy is regarded as the most problematic of all ministries with depleting gas resources and heavy reliance on fuel imports to meet domestic demand.

PM Shehbaz's new federal cabinet takes oath

The situation is worrisome as the country faces up to 12 hours of forced outage in rural areas and almost 8 hours in urban areas. Musadiq Malik, another PML-N member, and a possible contender for the position, has served as caretaker Minister for Water and Power in 2013. He joined the PML-N subsequent to the 2013 elections and held various portfolios till 2018 elections.

Malik recently held a meeting with the officials of Power Division and sought a briefing before addressing a press conference along with Dr Miftah Ismail (Finance Minister).

Khurram Dastigir Khan, a long term PML-N loyalist, has been appointed as Federal Minister though with no portfolio, with speculations rife that he may be in the running for the slot of Ministry of Energy.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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