ISLAMABAD: Iran is said to have agreed on a deal of providing additional 100-MW electricity to Gwadar at a rate within the range of Cents 8.4 to 12.4 per unit, after two day’s tough negotiations with Pakistan, well informed sources told Business Recorder.
Federal Minister for Power Engr Khurram Dastgir Khan led a 3-member delegation to Tehran from 11-13 March 2023 to negotiate and finalize tariffs for the recently completed 220-kV Polan-Gabd electricity transmission line.
The Iranian side initially insisted on fixing the tariff range between Cents 9.9 to 15.3 per unit and making it applicable with immediate effect on both the new Polan-Gabd electricity transmission line and the existing Jakigur-Mand interconnection line (the tariff agreement for which expires on 31 December 2024).
However, towards the latter half of the second day of negotiations, the two sides managed to agree on a new pricing formula. The agreement was signed on March 13, 2023, before our delegation’s return to Pakistan.
The Iranian side agreed to keep the tariffs unchanged for the existing Jakigur-Mand interconnection line till December 2024 and agreed to bring the new tariffs for the Polan-Gabd electricity transmission line down to the range of Cents 8.4 to 12.4 per unit, which are in Pakistan’s favour.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will inaugurate the electricity project soon after which 24 hours a day supply of electricity to Gwadar will be ensured.
Analysts argue that the settlement of tariffs is a positive development that will make possible operationalization of the 220-kV Polan-Gabd transmission line.
In addition, the additional 100-MW electricity to be supplied to the region via the line will account for addressing the electricity issues of Gwadar for the next 5-10 years. It will also allow for development of port, industry and city in the region.
Last month, Iran had urged Islamabad to revise rates of existing supply of 76-MW to Pakistan and also fix rate of additional supply of 100-MW at par with revised rates. However, Pakistan did not accept Iran’s demand.
Pakistan and Iran have completed transmission lines within their respective areas. Pakistan has completed 29-kilometer transmission line within its territory.
On March 15, 2023, during a press conference, Minister for Power Dastgir did not disclose the rates at which electricity would be imported from Iran, saying that this will be disclosed later on.
The Power Division, sources said, has to seek Federal Cabinet’s approval of Memorandum of Understanding signed between Pakistan and Iran. Presently, Pakistan is importing 104-MW of electricity to Balochistan’s bordering areas. With addition of 100-MW, total import of electricity will reach 204-MW.
Iran, sources said, has also sought update on an earlier understanding with Pakistan according to which Iran will supply 5,000-MW of electricity to Pakistan.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2023