ADB to provide $40m for energy programme


Irshad Ansari April 29, 2010

ISLAMABAD: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Pakistan on Thursday signed an agreement which says that the bank will provide $40 million for energy-efficient and cost-effective compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) called energy-savers.

The money is part of a $1.18 billion Energy Efficiency Investment Programme which underpins Pakistan’s efforts to address energy security and efficiency issues. In 2009, the ADB approved a multi-tranche financing facility worth $780 million to invest in priority energyefficiency projects which will help Pakistan to meet pressing energy needs. Under the facility, short and medium-term projects will be financed including thermal power plant rehabilitation, industrial energy efficiency programmes, public and commercial building energy efficiency projects and residential lighting and appliance replacement.

“Energy efficiency is a strategic priority and is the quickest way of bridging the energy gap. The CFL project alone will reduce peak demand by 1,100 megawatts. This means it defers the need for a new power plant which will cost at least $1 billion and will take years to build. More importantly, this eases the burden of load-shedding,” said Rune Stroem, ADB’s Country Director in Pakistan. Under the CFL project, 30 million high-quality energy-savers will be distributed among residential consumers in Pakistan. The government is investing $65 million and power distribution companies are pouring $20 million in the project, the largest in the world.

Consumers will receive energy-savers free of charge. Already, the world has turned to CFLs and governments in America, Asia and Europe are phasing out incandescent bulbs. “This national CFL project will save money for each family as they will pay less in their electricity bills in addition to reducing public expenditure and subsidy requirements,” said Stroem. The ADB will extend $760 million in loans from its ordinary capital resources. It will provide a further $20 million from its concessional Asian Development Fund. The Energy Efficiency Investment Programme will help the government reduce public expenditures and subsidies.

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