ISLAMABAD - The government has welcomed proposed investment of over $10 billion offered by the Consortium leaders of Asia Pacific Corporation (APC) in energy sector of Pakistan in a view to overcome power crisis in the country.

A high-level delegation of Consortium leaders of Asia Pacific Corporation on Thursday has met the Adviser to Prime Minister on Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain. The delegation briefed the Advisor about the investment to be made in the energy (power and gas) sector, which worth over $10 billion.

Sources said that Dr Asim was informed that $9 billion investment would be made in the power sector and $1.5 billion in the gas sector. The APC Consortium presented its proposal regarding replacement of existing gas meters with smart meters and gas leakage detection and reduction in the existing gas transmission and distribution system of the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Ltd. (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company Ltd (SSGC) network. APC Consortium in its presentation provided an outline of the feasibility assessments and engineering, project development, financing and risk minimisation. The proposed solution will entail complete real-time information about each consumer and meter and its two-way linkage with head-end. It is estimated that potentially 100 bcf gas can be saved from the solution. The consortium also informed that they propose to make investments in this project and repayment would be made from the sale of gas and decreased losses, which would entail no debt burden on the companies or the consumers.

Sources informed that Dr Asim has highly appreciated the programme. He has directed the gas companies Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Pipelines Limited (SSGPL) to work out the modalities within two weeks to save the precious gas before signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The Adviser informed the delegation that proper procurement procedures as per PPRA Rules have to be followed in implementation of the proposal.

The Energy Efficiency Programme included replacement of 23 million existing electric meters with smart meters, which would save 2,000 megawatt electricity in the country. The consortium would invest $5 billion in replacing the electric meters. Similarly, the APC consortium would invest $1.5 billion in Rehabilitation upgradation and improving the performance of National Transmission Dispatch Company (NTDC) that could save 2000-4000 megawatt electricity in the country.

According to the project plan, the APC consortium would make $3 billion investment in providing energy savers and street lights at subsidise rates in the country. The country could save 1500 megawatt electricity by using efficient energy savers (CSFLi). The meeting was informed that energy savers would be sold at only Rs 40 against the market price of Rs 150 to Rs 200.

The delegation that met Dr Asim was headed by Mark Wells, President APC and Dr Muhammad Iqbal Wahla, Director/country head EEP.

The high officials of USA, Italy, Singapore and China were also included in the delegation. Adriano Chiodi Cianfarani, Ambassador of Italy in Pakistan, Secretary Petroleum Dr Waqar Masood Khan and senior officers of the Ministry of Petroleum and Gas Companies.

The delegation would meet officials of Ministry of Water and Power today (Friday). The delegation would also meet President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf in next few days to discuss proposed investment.

It is pertinent to mention here that government of Pakistan would not spend a single penny in this programme and the country could overcome the energy shortage as well huge investment would come in the country at a time when others are taking their capital out of Pakistan.