October 16, 2018 (MLN): At an Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) meeting of the federal cabinet, chaired by Finance Minister Asad Umar today, the committee has decided to settle on a potential hike in electricity prices in the upcoming week.
Likewise, a summary on proposals regarding possible rise in power tariffs will also be presented in the next meeting of ECC.
Addressing a press conference after the meeting, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry apprised the local media that existing power plants in Pakistan are producing comparatively expensive electricity, due to which government faces losses on a daily basis.
Adding to this he said that at present, we are contributing around Rs.35 to 36 billion to the circular debt, monthly.
Elaborating the issue, he informed that the government is currently charging electricity at around Rs.11.71 per unit, while post installation of new plants, the cost has risen to Rs.14.22 per unit. Therefore on each unit produced and supplied, a loss of around Rs.2.63 is incurred.
Going at this rate, if the government does not increase power tariffs, the circular debt will increase on a daily basis.
At the meeting held earlier today, government has also decided to commence supply of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) to industries and plans to provide gas to export oriented units in the approaching winter season.
Requirement of Gas for these units is expected to be fulfilled with imported RLNG, as around five export oriented sectors require 300 million cubic feet (MMCF) of gas.
Fawad Chaudhry said in the press conference, “the government is looking into protection of the export industry and it will be subsidized.”
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