The government is planning to set up LNG-based energy projects in the province, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said on Saturday.
He was presiding over a high-level meeting to review the progress on energy projects. Federal Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Muhammad Asif and Federal Minister for Petroleum Shahid Khaqan Abbasi were present.
“The federal cabinet has approved three LNG-based energy projects for the Punjab. These will produce a total of 3,600 megawatt electricity. The first LNG plant will be set up near Sheikhupura. It will generate 1,000 megawatts. The prime minister will soon inaugurate the project,” he said.
He said that the government was making efforts to ease the energy crisis. “Renewable energy resources are also to be used to generate electricity,” he said.
He thanked Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Abbasi for approving the provision of 200 MMCFD LNG for the Punjab. “A number of energy projects will start generating electricity in the next three years.
The government will provide relief to the people. The energy projects will be executed transparently and speedily,” he said.
The chief minister directed the departments concerned to take the necessary steps for LNG-based power plants and start work for laying pipelines and upgrading transmission lines. “Energy projects based on LNG will be completed at the earliest. A 100 megawatt solar project has been completed in six months at Quaid-i-Azam Solar Park, Bahawalpur. It is the biggest solar project in the country,” he said.
“Work is also underway on a project to generate energy through indigenous coal with Chinese in Salt Range,” he said. Asif and Abbasi assured the chief minister of their cooperation in completion of the projects.
Minister for Minerals Chaudhry Sher Ali, MNA Hamza Shahbaz, Rana Sanaullah and Dr Ayesha Ghaus Pasha also attended the meeting.
A delegation of Chinese investors associated with energy sector met the chief minister.
Prospects of investment in energy sector in the Punjab were discussed during the meeting.
The chief minister said that there was a great scope of investment in energy sector. “Facilities are being provided on a priority basis for investment in the energy sector. The government is planning to use coal, hydel and solar resources to generate electricity,” he said. He said energy generation was top priority.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2015.
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