ISLAMABAD -  Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was Tuesday informed that acute shortage of water has brought down the hydel electricity generation by almost 1000MW.

In a meeting to review power generation and demand supply situation in the country chaired by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, it was informed that acute water shortage contributed to reduction in hydel generation as on October 27, the hydle generation stood at 2167MW as compared to 3088MW on the same day last year.

Minister for Power Sardar Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari, Secretaries of Power and Petroleum divisions and concerned senior government officials were present in the meeting.

The Prime Minister was briefed on the recent power outages that affected South Punjab, Upper Sindh and few other places of the country.

It was informed that early advent of smog, which is unprecedented and is likely to continue due to dry spell, resulted in tripping of transmission lines.

The officials of power division informed that low water availability as well as minimum demands by provinces resulted in this situation. In addition, non-availability of gas due to scheduled outage of LNG terminal which resulted in reduced generation from the LNG-based power plants.

However, effective measures have been taken to eliminate demand/supply gap which has resulted in restoration of required capacity. Except for smog related unscheduled outages, power is being supplied to all areas similar to the situation prior to October 30, 2017.

The Prime Minister was informed that efforts were afoot to meet the challenge arising out of smog and weather conditions in the country. In this context, the meeting was informed that a team of experts has been sent to China for studying Beijing model of transmission so that effective measures could be taken in the smog-hit areas.

The Prime Minister underscored the need for greater coordination among relevant departments and for advance planning to meet any emergent situation. The Prime Minister was also briefed over the progress on discussions regarding solarisation of tube-wells project in Balochistan.

The Premier emphasised the need for early finalisation of the plan in order to save huge losses which were being incurred by the provincial and the federal governments while footing electricity bills and non-payment of dues on tube-well connections. He directed AEDB to develop a concept paper on urgent basis.

He also emphasised the need for long-term power sector programme with clear targets for induction of power from various sources. This will enable the country to have reliable power at affordable cost throughout the year.