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Power loadshedding to continue on high-loss feeders, says Leghari

  • Providing electricity to such feeders will add to power sector losses, energy minister says
Published May 30, 2024

Federal Minister for Energy (Power Division) Sardar Awais Ahmad Khan Leghari on Thursday said that loadshedding would continue on high-loss feeders.

Addressing a press conference, Leghari sitting alongside Ali Pervaiz Malik, State Minister for Finance and Revenue, shared that the electricity demand across Pakistan, as per a report dated May 29, 2024, stood at 25,820MW while 21,588MW of electricity was generated and fed to the system.

The minister said that 4,232MW of electricity was not provided to the system, leading to loadsheddding.

The federal minister said loadshedding categorically occurred on loss-bearing feeders i.e. Category 3-8 feeders.

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“We didn’t provide electricity to these feeders, because this will add to losses in the power sector, which cannot be borne by the country’s economy,” he said.

“The economic loadshedding would continue because we cannot afford to increase our circular debt further,” he said.

The minister said until the distribution companies change their course and control their losses with the assistance of provincial governments, “loadshedding will continue on these high-loss feeders”.

“Areas where electricity theft is rampant need to be penalized,” he said.

The federal minister admitted that loadshedding was witnessed on Category-1,2 feeders, where losses are lower than 20%, owing to technical faults.

“We have directed the CEOs of distribution companies to improve their service quality and end power outages on no-loss feeders,” he said.

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The minister said the system has enough generation and transmission capacity to meet the electricity demand, which is expected to increase in the coming summer months.

Leghari said that 7,000MW is being generated through hydel sources, while the country has a hydel capacity of 10,000MW. “Several power plants would kick in as well, enhancing our generation,” he said.

Govt to continue net-metering policy

The federal minister reiterated that the government would continue its current net-metering policy. “We have started conducting calculations on it, and once we feel the need for its revision, it will be announced through a policy statement,” he said.

Explaining the net-metering mechanism, Leghari said that at present, a unit is swapped for a unit, while the power companies purchase the excess unit produced by the consumer at the set price.

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“The buying rate has remained unchanged since 2017, which may be revised because this increases the cost of electricity purchased,” he said.

“However, whoever has invested to date will continue to operate under the same conditions, without any changes to their licenses and terms & conditions,” he added.

“In a day or two, data regarding the power distribution will be provided through Roshan Pakistan app, which is available on Play Store,” he shared.

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