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ISLAMABAD: The Engineering Development Board (EDB) has urged the National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) and power Distribution Companies (Discos) to encourage local suppliers of equipment instead of giving preference to certain influential elements representing foreign companies.

In a letter to all heads of NTDC and Discos, General Manager (SGD/Tariff), Engineer Khuda Bakhsh stated that the EDB has been receiving several representations from the local manufacturers of the Electrical Power Equipments (EPEs) lamenting that the locally manufactured EPEs are not being given due preference in procurement process despite the fact that these equipment are approved by NTDC or the Discos.

The local manufacturers are being discouraged by all influential with the support of the local representatives of foreign suppliers. A self-explanatory fresh representation was received from M/s Shaheen Traders, Lahore which is a recognized manufacturer of hardware and other electrical equipment. Their products are also registered in the list of locally manufactured goods i.e. Customs General Order (CGO)-02/2017 (revised version).

The EBD has claimed that M/s Shaheen Traders, in their representation noted that they are pre-qualified local manufacturers/ suppliers of EPEs to the NTDCL/ Discos, with track record supplies since years. However, due to involvement of certain influential elements and their misleading and deceptive references, the local industry is facing hurdles in procurement process.

The matter also came under discussion in a high level meeting held at NTDCL office on August 29, 2022 attended by the representatives from NTDCL, Discos, K-Electric, TUSDEC, PITAC, KTDMC and power equipment manufacturers, wherein it was agreed that NTDCL/Discos shall discourage this kind of practice.

According to the EDB, the government is striving to save the outflow of each penny of foreign exchange, particularly, in the present deplorable state of foreign currency reserves; NTDCL /Discos are also aware that the government is seriously focusing on “Make in Pakistan” strategy to substitute the imports and reduce the trade deficit. Whereas, EDB, being an apex body of the Ministry of Industries and Production is working for the promotion of import substitution, indigenization and self-reliance in engineering goods.

For power sector, the EDB is working in tandem with Ministry of Energy (Power Division) for formulation of a comprehensive “Power Sector Indigenization Plan (PSIP” under National Electricity Policy 2021.

In view of hardships being faced by local suppliers, EDB has requested NTDCL and Discos to prefer the procurement of locally produced EPEs considering the provisions under SRO 827(I)/2001 and encourage the local industry discouraging/ignoring the influential elements and deceptive representations of traders/commercial importers/ agents.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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