Pakistan’s Caretaker Minister of Energy, Power and Petroleum, Muhammad Ali has said that the country is seeking investments and technology partners from the Middle East to develop its energy sector.
“We are looking for investments and technology partners from the Middle East, which has very advanced technologies and large players in this sector,” said Ali during an interview with UAE’s state-owned news agency WAM.
“Pakistan has the potential. We have players in the country but international presence is very limited,” the minister said, who is attending the ADIPEC event in Abu Dhabi.
He said “there is a huge opportunity between the Middle East players and the Pakistani entities”.
The four-day ADIPEC, an energy conference taking place in Abu Dhabi from October 2 under the theme ‘Decarbonising. Faster. Together.’ is an international exhibition and conference bringing together ideas, ambition, technology and capital needed to accelerate urgent, collective and responsible action to decarbonise quicker and future-proof our energy system.
Ali, meanwhile, shared that Pakistan has a strong presence at the ongoing ADIPEC with around 10 companies from oil exploration, marketing, and related sectors.
“We have seen a very good response. All our companies are actively engaged, and there’s substantial interest in their offerings. The presence here going very well,” he stated.
The caretaker minister admitted that on the exploration front, Pakistan has not been able to achieve much success.
“This was due to two major reasons, one there have been some payment issues within the supply chain, and secondly, we have not marketed ourselves the way we should have,” he said.
Ali outlined measures being taken by the government including addressing exploration challenges by improving data availability, removing payment barriers, and revising policies.
The minister said the government is focusing on expanding its natural gas supply.
“We are also focusing on the power sector. We are looking at transmission investments, promoting renewables, and we are also looking at removing the circular debt within the power sector so that the payment issues are sorted,” he said.
The caretaker minister shared that the government would announce bids for offshore exploration in December.
Ali said that decarbonisation and electrification are key components of Pakistan’s energy strategy.
“In Pakistan, we have not focused as much on these two aspects as we should have, but there is now a strong focus on them. We are already working on energy conservation, electrification, and the re-purposing of natural gas for power generation to electrify appliances and vehicles.
“On the decarbonisation front, the Ministry of Climate Change is working on establishing a carbon fund, while the Ministry of Energy is working on the development of a comprehensive carbon policy,” he told WAM.