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LAHORE: Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif Friday broke ground of the 1,200 MW Chashma Nuclear Power Plant Unit-5 (C-5), which is likely to be completed in seven to eight years at a cost of around $3.48 billion.

Addressing the ground-breaking ceremony at Chashma (Mianwali), the premier said, keeping in mind the country’s requirements of clean and cheap energy sources, the project needs to be completed before the given schedule.

Terming the project as a big milestone and a symbol of cooperation between the two great friends China and Pakistan, he said the project would help the country promote clean, efficient and comparatively cheaper energy. After many years, the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was going again in full swing, he added.

On June 30, 2023, Shehbaz Sharif witnessed the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the C-5 project between China National Nuclear Corporation Overseas Ltd, (CNOS) and Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC).

Announcing that the risk of potential default had been completely averted through team efforts of the government, he said, “Our detractors had been fabricating rumours all around that Pakistan was going to default on its sovereign commitments but we crossed all turbulent waters in just 15 months,” He also commended the financial support provided by China, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in recent times

The premier said the history of nuclear energy cooperation between Pakistan and China goes back to 30 years and this mutual cooperation to promote clean, efficient and comparatively cheaper energy is a great success and also manifestation of great friendship and a model for other countries to emulate.

Emphasising the need for reducing the span of seven to eight years for Chashma-5 nuclear power project, he said reducing this period of installation will be a great favor to the people of Pakistan. He also thanked China for providing a discount of Rs 30 billion on this project which, he said, is a very kind gesture from the Chinese friends.

He recalled K-3 nuclear energy power plant was inaugurated by him in Karachi a few months ago which is now operational and is equipped with the modern technology like C-5. He said safety arrangements are par excellence and the endorsement in this regard has also come from the head of the IAEA.

Charge D’Affaires of the Chinese Embassy Ms Pang Chunxue said Chashma-5 nuclear power plant will provide more than 10,000 local jobs and a large number of raw material, equipment and related services will be purchased locally which can effectively promote socio-economic development.

She said China-Pakistan cooperation in the field of peaceful use of nuclear energy has made great achievements. She said iron clad friendship between Pakistan and China is continuously writing new chapters and this was not possible without joint efforts on both sides.

She said under the CPEC, 14 energy projects have been put in commercial operation with a total installed capacity of 8,000 megawatts. She said the two countries will move side by side to promote the high quality development of the CPEC and make joint efforts to build a closer China Pakistan Community with a shared future in the new era.

Chairman Pakistan Atomic Energy Cooperation Raja Ali Raza Anwar said on the occasion that Chashma-5 project has brought us one step closer to the envisaged goal of producing 8800 megawatts clean nuclear energy. He said Chashma-5 will enhance not only our nuclear power technology experience but also have an impact on several areas of socio-economic uplift.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Sianjee Jul 15, 2023 03:19pm
Crookks and optics! Priceless!
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mrshiff Jul 16, 2023 12:51am
Its old technology...Indians landing on moon...and the rogue generals and their sponsored crooks taking country to stone age! No accountability they have doomed the country!
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Masroor Jul 16, 2023 12:55am
What to celebrate? Indian technologically savvy youth ruling the world, Pakistani youth are escaping the country in search of better opportunities and perishing in high seas. What a pity the paindoo morons have destroyed future of Pakistan.
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