PM greets his team over ADB’s approval to fund coal power projects

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Monday congratulated his team on the approval by the Asian Development Bank to fund two coal fired power projects at a cost of 1.2 billion dollars, to add 1320 Megawatts to the national grid.

The Prime Minister termed it a “a major diplomatic and economic victory” for members of finance, water and power, economic affairs, and foreign office divisions, for the approval by the ADB’s policy board for the coal-fired power projects at Jamshoro in Sindh.

Nawaz Sharif, in a statement released from the PM House, said the success was remarkable, particularly in view of sustained opposition of developed countries in recent years to financing of coal power projects due to environmental considerations.

“Ever since coming to the government I have taken it up as personal challenge to convince important capitals regarding the need to view Pakistan’s case differently due to extreme energy shortages,” he said.

The Prime Minister said the high cost for construction of new projects could only be brought down by installation of hydel and coal based power plants.

He also appreciated the understanding of Board of Directors of ADB in granting approval to the project.

He said he had directed the ministries of Finance, and Water and Power to proceed with the conclusion of agreements swiftly and expedite the implementation process.

He said it was important to note that the Jamshoro coal fired power project would not only add to the much needed power to national grid, but would also open up the window for bilateral, multi-lateral, and concessional financing for Gadani power park and other similar projects.

The Prime Minister expressed confidence that the ADB’s approval would also provide a new lease of life to the possibility of use of the world’s second largest coal reserves at Thar in Sindh.

“As an elected Prime Minister of Pakistan I am on track to deliver on the promise in bringing down the cost of electricity in next three to five years,” he added.