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Target of 55,000MW energy generation set by govt: minister

LAHORE, Feb 22: Federal Minister for Energy (Power Division) Omar Ayub Khan Friday said the government has set target of 55,000MW power generation by 2030 out of which 18,000MW power generation will be generated from renewable resources.

He was speaking on the occasion of inauguration of TSG training Simulator at Technical Services Group (TSG) of National Transmission and Despatch Company Limited, here on Friday.

Deputy Chief of Mission Yusuke SHINDO of Japan jointly inaugurated TSG training Simulator.

The project has been completed with the cooperation of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) with the cost of Rs one billion. Secretary Power Division Irfan Ali, MD NTDC and JICA representatives were also present.

The minister thanked the government of Japan and JICA for extending assistance for installation of Training Simulator. 

He said that time spent in simulator was never wasted and will benefit and enhance the vision of young engineers of NTDC and DISCOs. However, he said that, he along with the team of power division, including the secretary power, MD NTDC, CEOs DISCOs, working day and night to eliminate constrains of the power sector with improvement in transmission, distribution and generation system.

Transmission and distribution system needed to be corrected, he added.

The minister said that he and the secretary power were making surprise visits to various distribution companies in  Sindh, KPK and Punjab for improvement of the power sector.

He said the government believed in transparency, hence, receiving foreign direct investment (FDI) from various countries and Saudi Arabia, which had shown keenness to invest in the power sector during its recent visit of the KSA Crown Prince to Pakistan.

The minister said that security lines of energy would be controlled and Pakistan would not be dependent on other countries after the establishment of Simulator.

He said that the power infrastructure, transmission lines and distribution system would be upgraded which needed investment of 55 billion dollars.

While comparing the power theft and losses of distribution system during the month of JanJanuary  2018 and January 2019, he said that power theft losses had been reduced to 5.6 per cent and managed to save Rs 10 billion.

He also sought transfer of technology from Japan.

Omar Ayub appreciated the efforts of CEOs of DISCOs for elimination of power theft and improvement in recoveries.

Deputy Chief of Mission  Yusuke SHINDO of Japan applauded the hospitalities extended by the Ministry of Energy (Power Division) and NTDC. He vowed to extend financial assistance to Pakistan in coming years.



SBP launches cheaper liquidity facilities for the development of...

February 22, 2019 (MLN): State Bank of Pakistan has issued three Shariah Compliant Refinance Schemes that are expected to provide level playing field to the Islamic banking industry. Currently, SBP offers various subsidized refinance facilities to the banks / DFIs to channelise the funds into priority sectors.

Shariah compliant Islamic Export Refinance facility and Islamic long term financing facility for the exporters are available to the Islamic banking industry. However, addition of Shariah compliant financing facility for Renewable Energy, financing facility for storage of agricultural produce and Refinance facility for modernization of SMEs will meet the long awaited demand of the industry, especially for the Agriculture and SME sectors.

Mudarabah based facilities would provide long term cheaper liquidity to the end users. The financing under Islamic financing facility for Renewable Energy will be available in two categories. These are (i)prospective sponsors desirous of setting up renewable energy power projects with capacity ranging between 1 – 50 MW and (ii) consumers willing to install facility using renewable energy source for generation of electricity ranging between 4 KW – 1 MW for own use and/or for supplying to the distribution company.

 Islamic Financing facility for storage of agricultural produce will be available for setting up silos, warehouses and cold storages. Refinance facility for modernization of SMEs will be available for purchase of new imported/ local plant & machinery for SMEs.

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SBP issues clarification/rebuttal in response to misleading news story...

February 22, 2019 (MLN): The State Bank of Pakistan has issued a clarification in reference to the story entitled ‘Pakistan has come out of financial crisis: SBP governor’ published on 19th February, 2019 and the editorial entitled ‘SBP governor’s remarks’ published on 20th February, 2019 in an English daily.

The SBP has said the factual position is rather different from the insinuations attributed to Governor’s interaction with the press. In fact, the conversation reported in the story and the editorial attributed to the Governor SBP are both misleading.  The SBP has given a link to the press conference to clarify what was actually said.

SBP further said “Assuming these premises the editorial goes on to claim inconsistencies between SBPs monetary policy statements and its quarterly/annual reports, and the purported statements of the Governor at the press conference.

You will appreciate that publishing a story and editorial without fully verifying the facts, particularly during the times in which important stabilization measures are working their way through the economy, weakens public confidence while unhinging expectations.”

On the question of whether the Federal Government had crossed the limit set for SBP borrowing, the Governor had only clarified that that the law i.e. Section 9C of the SBP Act does not set any limit on Government borrowing from the State Bank. He further explained that under the said law GOP was required to bring its SBP borrowing to zero at the end of each quarter and if it does not then the Finance Minister has to make a statement on the floor of the house. This was a clarification given on a specific question and in no way changes the SBP stance that borrowing from SBP is more inflationary than borrowing from commercial banks, the press release from the SBP clarified.

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Urea offtake during January increases by 4.5%

February 22, 2019 (MLN): According to an official data released by National Fertilizer Development Centre (NFDC), urea offtake during the month of January, 2019 stood at 564 thousand tonnes, exhibiting an increase of 4.5% over the same period last year.

Most of the urea sales during the month were made in the province of Punjab (393 thousand tonnes, up by 10%, YoY) whereas Balochistan had the lowest demand (11 thousand tonnes, down by 37%, YoY).

Urea demand in Sindh went down by 7% to 133 thousand tonnes during the month, whereas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa it jumped by 30% to 26 thousand tonnes.

With respect to production levels, domestic production of urea stood 460 thousand tonnes (down by 10% YoY), whereas none was imported during the month of January.

Since only 564 thousand tonnes were sold this month, the remaining amount of Urea (70 thousand tonnes) shall be stored for future use.  

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DAP offtake falls by 19% in January, YoY

February 22, 2019 (MLN): DAP offtake in January 2019 was recorded at 75 thousand tonnes, showing a decrease of 19.1 percent over January, 2018, as per official data on fertilizer offtake released by National Fertilizer Development Authority (NFDC).

During the month, maximum DAP sales were made in Punjab (48 thousand tonnes, down by 34%, YoY), whereas minimum demand surfaced from the province of Balochistan (2000 tonnes, up by 38%, YoY).

Offtake in Sindh amounted to 22 thousand tonnes, exhibiting an increase of 44% over the year, whereas demand in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa decreased by 8% to 3100 tonnes.

Total domestic production of DAP during the month was recorded at 31 thousand tonnes, whereas previous month’s leftover amounted for 493 thousand tonnes. On top of this, 39 thousand tonnes were imported as well. As a result, the collective availability of DAP totaled at over 563 thousand tonnes.

Since DAP sales of 75 thousand tonnes were achieved in January, the remaining amount will be stored for use in future.

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