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ISLAMABAD: Private Power & Infrastructure Board (PPIB) has expedited its efforts to clear bottlenecks in achieving of Financial Closure of 700-MW Azad Pattan Hydropower Project, after Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, wherein issues related to delay in projects came under discussion.

Azad Pattan Hydropower project of 700.7 MW located on River Jhelum at dual boundary between AJ&K and Punjab is being developed by M/s Azad Pattan Power Pvt. Ltd. - APPL under provisions of Policy for Power Generation Projects 2002.

The project is included in China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) program and its Financial Closing is scheduled to be achieved till December 31, 2022.

In a letter to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) CPPA-G, Rehan Akhtar, Managing Director PPIB Shah Jahan Mirza has apprised that project related all agreements (GoP IA, TPPA, GoAJ&K IA, GoAJ&K WUA, GoPunjab WUA) except Land Lease Agreement (LLA) have been executed, cost and tariff determined, term sheet approved, lenders facility agreement signed and environmental and power evacuation NOCs issued. However, NEPRA granted conditional approval to Tripartite Power Purchase Agreement (TPPA), the core commercial agreement document, on which CPPA-G sought comments from PPIB, NTDC and Project Company. Project Company and PPIB submitted the responses separately to CPPA-G.

PPIB argues that considerable time has already lapsed; therefore, CPPA-G is once again requested to expedite the matter with NEPRA on priority so that any further delay in achievement of Financial Closing and subsequent construction of 700.7 MW Azad Pattan Hydropower Project could be avoided.

Financial closure of 3 power projects: Govt seeks Sinosure’s support

In another letter to Senior Member Revenue, AJ&K government, Managing Director PPIB has noted that his office wrote letters on May 10, 2022, June 23, 2022 and August 31, 2022 whereby it was apprised that the land acquisition process for private land located in Tehsil Mong, Tehsil Thorar and Tehsil Dhirkot up to issuance of awards was completed in early 2021. Land lease agreements were approved by GoAJ&K in August 2021 for execution by the parties; however, slow progress in evacuation of houses is being noticed. So far, out of total 51 houses, 14 are still to be evacuated.

Managing Director has requested GoAJ&K to expedite completion of assignment and subsequent activities by concerned offices on a priority basis so that any further delay in achievement of Financial Closing and subsequent construction of 700.7 MW Azad Pattan Hydropower Project could be avoided.

PPIB has already written letters to Secretary, Forest Department, Punjab, for de-notification process of 3202.75 Kanal of reserve forest land on priority basis enabling the Board of Revenue, Punjab to complete remaining land acquisition process of this land so that the Project Company could achieve financial closing in a timely manner.

Another letter was written to Deputy Commissioner, Rawalpindi for execution of Conveyance Deed for private land in Kotli-Sattian (1142.15 Kanal) and Murree (87.6 Kanal) and subsequent mutation in favour of the project company, besides mutation and Contingent Sale Agreement (CSA) for government land ( 13.5 Kanal) in Tehsil Murree.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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