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Print Print 2023-06-03

Provincialisation of Discos: PC nominates senior member to facilitate Power Division

  • PC had requested that scope and outcome for this transaction may be defined by Power Division and NEPRA
Published June 3, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Privatisation Commission has nominated its senior Consultant (Energy) Salman Amin to facilitate Power Division as part of team to develop bidding documents for engagements of transaction advisor for acquisition of power Distribution Companies (Discos) to provinces, well informed sources told Business Recorder.

Privatisation Commission had requested that the scope and outcome envisaged for this transaction may be defined by Power Division and NEPRA as per policy and regulatory framework.

The federal government is mulling over handing Discos to respective provinces with their consent like other organisations devolved to provinces as per 18th constitutional amendment, well informed sources in PM Office told Business Recorder.

Discos seek Rs1.5 per unit QTA for Q3

SAPM on Government Effectiveness, Dr Jehanzeb Khan has proposed that Discos should be handed over to provinces on the analogy of developed organisations under 18th amendment.

According to sources, SAPM recently gave a briefing on constitutional arrangements of the power sector. He pointed out that electricity was included in the Concurrent List prior to 18th constitutional amendment which is now in Federal Legislature List part II; hence, jointly vested in the federation and the provinces.

He further stated that federal government devolved a number of organisations to the provinces consequent to the 18th constitutional amendment, adding that similar mechanism should be adopted for the Discos.

He maintained that the federal government through the Council of Common Interests (CCI) should agree, in principle, to transfer the Discos to any province willing to accept the responsibility. The modalities can be mutually worked out through respective transaction advisors.

In February this year, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif decided to hold meetings with Chief Ministers to convince them to accept provincialisation of at least one Disco before placing the proposal before the CCI.

The sources said Punjab, Sindh and KPK showed a willingness to take over the control of Discos in their respective provinces subject to acceptance of their pre-conditions.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif also constituted an 11-member committee comprising Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Minister for Defence (Chair), Khurram Dastgir Khan Minister for Power, Syed Naveed Qamar Minister for Commerce, Musadik Masood Malik Minister of State for Petroleum, provincial chief ministers and ministers nominated by CMs, Dr Muhammad Jehanzeb Khan, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Government Effectiveness, Finance Secretary, Secretary Power (Secretary of the Committee), Secretary Privatisation Commission, Secretary Law & Justice, Provincial Chief Secretaries, to finalize recommendations for provincialisation of Discos.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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