Renewable energy more relevant for climate vulnerable Pakistan: PM Imran

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said targets set by his government   to increase the share of renewable energy  would ensure affordable, sustainable and clean electricity for Pakistan which is currently facing high risks of climate change.

Addressing the signing ceremony of 310 Mega Watt Super-6 wind power project  at the PM Office, the prime minister said short-term planning of previous governments to set up power stations running on expensive imported fuel was the main reason behind electricity crisis.

The International Finance Corporation of the World Bank as lead arranger will provide $320 million long-term debt financing to six companies to set up wind power plants under Super-6 costing total of $450 million.

The companies include ACT2Wind, Artistic Wind Power, DIN Group, GAEL, Metro Power and TriCom.

Imran Khan expressed satisfaction over the signing of wind power plants in line with the government’s vision of clean energy, which he said was relevant for Pakistan due to its greater vulnerability to climate change and melting glaciers.

He thanked the World Bank and IFC for resuming the almost elapsed project due to negligence by the previous government and said the financed wind projects would ensure cheap electricity for consumers for their non-reliance on imported fuel.

The prime minister said the government faced tough economic challenges by inheriting $120 billion fiscal deficit, however overcame these difficulties with resilience and prudent policies.

Khan lauded  his economic team whose tireless efforts he said resulted in  strength of rupee, positive market trends, increased exports and restoration of investors’ confidence.

He also lauded relevant departments on recovery of Rs120 billion by hitting at those involved in theft of electricity.

He said the bottom line of his government”s economic policy was ensuring trickling down of benefits of any project to the common man.

The prime minister stressed upon the importance of wealth creation with proper taxation to transfer the monetary impact to the grassroots level.

Federal Minister for Energy Omar Ayub said 8,000MW would be added to national grid generated through renewable means by 2030, which would boost industrialization and ultimately employment for locals.

He mentioned that $130 billion market of renewable energy in Pakistan had immense potential and said setting up of wind and solar panels would develop an ecosystem with clean energy.

IFC Regional Head Nadeem Siddiqi said Prime Minister Imran Khan”s encouragement of private sector in renewable energy would help bring greater investment.

He also lauded WB Country Director for Pakistan Illango Patchmuthu for the support of wind power projects.

Adviser to PM on Energy Nadeem Babar said Pakistan had a bright future as it was set to witness a paradigm shift in the domain of energy.

Earlier, the six companies in the presence of the World Bank and IFC signed the launch of Super-6 wind power project.