Power sector revival: Technical hands may be taken on board

ISLAMABAD: The government to be led by Imran Khan is to focus on power sector’s recovery, transmission and distribution losses, which have made it highly unsustainable by replacing bureaucrats with technical experts.

Presently, power sector sector’s circular debt has crosses Rs1 trillion mark of which Rs 500 billion is parked in the books of PHPL, a company established to get loans in the name of power Distribution Companies (Discos).

The main reasons for the increase in circular debt are: (i) non-collection of 100 per cent billing Discos; (ii) non-resolution of payment issue of agri-Balochistan tube-wells and AJ&K; (iii) high system losses than determined by the regulator ;(iv) delay in issuance of notification by the regulator; and (v) non-payment of refund by FBR to distribution companies and recovery by FBR through coercive measures.

“The upcoming government would have to formulate a clear strategy to improve recovery and an approach that ends electricity theft – factors that are burdening the national exchequer through subsidies. The issue of circular debt can never be resolved unless recoveries improve,” said an official on condition of anonymity.

Published in Business Recorder, 31st July, 2018