Plan to privatize Disco’s shelved

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In a meeting of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Water and Power held on Wednesday, the Secretary Water and Power Yousaf Naseem Khokhar stated that K-Electric’s sell off and privatization has not achieved the desired results and hence the process of privatizing Discos has been shelved.

As per Khokhar, the acquirer of K-Electric i.e. Shanghai Electric Power had not been provided an NOC by the government and they have plans to invest an amount to the tune of $9b. He mentioned that K-Electric still was heavily dependent on 650 megawatt electricity being provided by the National Grid and the company had failed to increase their existential generation capacity and upgrade their transmission systems. He also shared that the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) had expressed its reservations over the performance of K-Electric.

The secretary revealed that due to the poor experience of privatizing K-Electric, the purpose of unbundling and corporatizing the power sector had failed hence the privatization and selling of Disco’s had been abandoned indefinitely.

According to MQM’s MNA Syed Waseem Hassan raised the issue of over-billing and burdening Karachi’s consumers to the tune of Rs60b by K-Electric which had been addressed in a letter sent by the Ministry of Water and Power to NEPRA. The claim had been declined by both K-Electric and the regulator.

The Secretary also mentioned since the Disco’s were not being privatized and unbundled, it was important to address their efficiency and improve their performances, he concluded.