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Pakistan to import 1,100MW electricity from Iran in 2009

Aug 9, 2008 - Pakistan Daily Times

* Some members walk out from session over power outages Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: The Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) will import 1,100 megawatts of electricity from Iran in 2009 for supply to Gwadar and other coastal areas of Balochistan, Water and Power Minister Liaqat Jatoi told the National Assembly on Wednesday.

Jatoi said the contract for import of electricity had been given to Iran's Tavanir Company. The minister was responding to questions by opposition members on what steps the government was taking to check the frequent power outages in the country.

Jatoi told the house that the country was expected to produce 8,728MW a year by 2010. He said that the public and private sectors were carrying out several hydroelectric and thermal projects to meet Pakistan's electricity demand. He said that his ministry planned to increase power generation in the current year by installing two rental gas turbine power stations. He said one power station of 150MW capacity would be installed in Lahore and another of 136MW capacity at Bhikki. He said the Lahore power station had been commissioned, while the Bhikki power station would be commissioned in October.

Jatoi said that Larkana Division-II had reported 44.4 percent line losses in 2005-06 and 43.5 percent in May 2006-07. He said that WAPDA had fined power thieves Rs 1120.212 million in 2005-06, Rs 725.728 million in 2004-05 and Rs 683.831 million in 2003-04. He said that 28,652 electricity theft cases and arrest of 1,289 power pilferers were recorded in the last three years.

He said the Lahore Electric Supply Company had reported Rs 170,66.67 million line losses and the Gujranwala Electric Power Company Rs 6,132.22 million in line losses in the last two years.

To a question, Jatoi said the Multan Electric Power Company (MEPCO) had received 3,390 applications for agricultural tube well connections between June 1 and December 2006. He said that MEPCO had issued 742 tube well connections so far and planned to issue another 4,400 connections in the current financial year. He said the ministry had no plans to fix uniform rates of electricity up to 500 units.

Some members from the Muttahida Quami Movement, the MMA and the PML-N staged a token walkout from the session to protest against the lingering power shortage in Karachi.

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