PM orders reduction in load shedding

Shehbaz says a high-powered Chinese delegation will visit Pakistan soon

Our Correspondent June 12, 2024
Capacity payments go to the power plants which remain idle and do not produce any electricity but consumers are compelled to pay due to the agreements signed by different governments. PHOTO: FILE


Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has directed provincial governments to join the campaign against power theft and minimise load shedding across the country amid rising temperatures.

According to Express News, the premier chaired a review meeting on load shedding, prevention of electricity theft, and reforms in the energy sector.

The prime minister issued instructions to establish effective and active systems within distribution companies to facilitate timely registration of complaints regarding power outages. "Given the rising heat, there should be minimal load shedding," he said.

Prime Minister Shehbaz emphasised that the purchase of new transformers must strictly adhere to international standards. He also instructed relevant officials to utilise modern systems globally recognised for reforms in the energy sector.

Shehbaz called on provincial governments to fully support the campaign against electricity theft and ensure severe penalties for those involved. He also issued strict instructions to curb load shedding and overbilling.

Read PM orders reduction in load shedding

During the briefing, it was revealed that from April 1 to May 30, 134 cases had been registered against power thieves, and 90 employees involved in electricity theft had been arrested.

The prime minister was briefed on the progress of the reorganisation of the National Transmission and Dispatch Company (NTDC). The next fiscal year's development budget includes a plan to meter 124,611 transformers as part of the energy sector reforms.

With support from the Asian Development Bank, one-third of IESCO's customers are being transitioned to smart meters. The scope of this project will later be expanded to other regions of the country.

Areas with better recovery rates will be load shedding-free, while partial load shedding will occur in areas with defaulters and electricity theft. The prime minister was updated on the progress of the anti-power theft campaign during the meeting.

Separately, the premier said that his recent five-day visit to China remained successful as a high-powered Chinese delegation would visit Pakistan soon.

The prime minister, chairing the meeting of the federal cabinet, told the members that the collective efforts by his team including the federal ministers and federal secretaries came to fruition and that the visit was a great opportunity to strengthen the Pakistan-China bilateral relations.

He said that despite the security issue highlighted during the engagements with the Chinese leadership and business community, the visit concluded with a “positive note.”

“I can say unequivocally that the visit ended with a positive note. During the conversation with the Chinese ambassador at the banquet hosted by the Communist Party Secretary during my visit to Shanxi province, I got a deep feeling that the visit reminded very successful,” Prime Minister Shehbaz remarked while apprising the cabinet members of his visit.

The prime minister thanked all of his cabinet members particularly Ishaq Dar, Ahsan Iqbal, Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Dr Musaddik Malik and Shaza Fatima Khawaja, and relevant federal secretaries for their collective efforts which led to the success of the visit.

He expressed confidence that the collective efforts would lead to the swift and successful execution of the second phase of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.


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