US company to invest in Pakistan’s solar energy sector

Envoy says solar energy has potential in places where power cannot be easily provided

Irshad Ansari June 26, 2019

ISLAMABAD: A US company has announced plans to invest in the solar power sector of Pakistan through a joint venture with a local company.

The US-based company has already introduced its mobile solar technology in Pakistan, which can be used for civil and military purposes and assist in overcoming the circular debt. The announcement was made by US Embassy Commercial Officer in Pakistan Mark Russel and US company Solar Stick’s Pakistani partner Muslim Lakhani on Tuesday at a ceremony held in Islamabad.

The US diplomat said Washington wanted to expand its relations with Islamabad and US firms were interested in making investment in Pakistan as solar energy had a lot of potential in places where electricity could not be easily provided.

“We are making investment in Pakistan through a joint venture with Net Power Company. Solar energy promises enormous benefits to far flung regions of Pakistan,” he said.

Speaking on the occasion, Net Power Pakistan Private Limited Chief Executive Muslim Lakhani said several areas of Pakistan were still deprived of electricity including rural regions of Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P). He said US company Solar Stick was working in the solar energy sector all over the world, adding that the solar systems installed by the company in Afghanistan 10 years ago were properly functioning to date.

The total demand for electricity in Pakistan stands at around 26,000 megawatts while the shortfall is calculated at around 7,000 megawatts, which can be easily bridged through solar energy.

Net Power Pakistan could easily procure electricity for various sectors while solar energy could also lead to reduced cost of production, he said.

Pakistan could also invest in solar energy at the government level, Lakhani emphasised, adding solar energy could greatly improve the energy mix and also help control the circular debt. 

Published in The Express Tribune, June 26th, 2019.

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