PM blocks move to increase electricity tariff for industries

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi blocked the bureaucracy’s move to increase electricity prices for industrial consumers by about 13% through the withdrawal of Rs3-per-unit subsidy just six weeks before the end of the government’s term.

The decision to withdraw the subsidy would have made exports uncompetitive in addition to denting the PML-N’s vote bank.

The Power Division in consultation with the Finance Division placed a summary before the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet for its approval. It hoped that the government would withdraw the electricity subsidy with effect from January 2018. Its second submission before the ECC was that in order to clear the subsidy arrears, the ECC should allow to recover over Rs10 billion from domestic and commercial consumers.

Published in The Express Tribune, 13th April, 2018