ISLAMABAD - Keeping in view the ongoing severe power shortage in the country, the PML-N government has allocated major budgetary chunk of Rs 260 billion to the power sector in the upcoming budget 2014-15 that would initiate several new energy projects.

The government has planned to start several new energy projects in the country from the next financial year that included Diamer Bhasha Dam, Dasu Hydro Power Project and many others. According to the budget documents, the government has allocated Rs 260 billion for energy related projects in the budget.  The Annual Plan Coordination Committee (APCC) other day approved energy related projects worth of Rs 260 billion wherein Rs 155 billion would be allocated for power generation projects of the country. The National Economic Council under the chair of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif would give final approval to the development budget programme today (Thursday).

According to the documents available with The Nation, the government has allocated Rs 81.43 billion for hydel projects for next financial year 2014-15. The government has kept Rs 15 billion for the land acquisition of Diamer Bhasha Dam project, a project of having capacity producing 4500-megawatt electricity. Similarly, the government has allocated Rs 10 billion for the construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam project for the next financial year. The total cost of aforesaid dam is estimated at Rs 834.205 billion wherein foreign exchange component is Rs 358.825 billion. Meanwhile, the government has kept Rs 4.42 billion for Dasu Hydro power project stage-I. The overall cost of Dasu Hydro power project stage-I is projected at Rs 486.093 billion. Similarly, the government has allocated Rs 30.438 billion for Neelum Jhelum Hydro Power Project 969MW. Similarly, the government has kept Rs 1.26 billion for refurbishment and up-gradation of generation units of Mangla Power station (310 MW).

Meanwhile, the government has kept Rs 8.93 billion for Tarbela Fourth Extension Hydro Power project 2800MW. The government has also allocated funds for other hydel projects like Rs 10 million for Basho Hydro project 28MW, Rs 200 million for Bunji Hydro Power project 7100MW, Rs 6.8 billion for Golan Gol hydropower project Chitral.

According to the documents, the government has allocated Rs 23.4 billion for power generation companies in the budget for the upcoming fiscal year. The Gencos would start three new projects with the cost of Rs 500 million in next financial year.  The projects included 750MW CCPP at Shahdra Multan and Faisalabad with cost of Rs 300 million. The other two projects are 1x660MW coal fired plant Lakhra with cost of Rs 100 million and installation of 5MW solar power plant for Tehsil Moola, district Khuzdar.

Similarly, the government has kept Rs 63.853 billion for NTDC (National Transmission & Dispatch Company) for next financial year. The NTDC would launch new projects worth of Rs 25.85 billion. The NTDC new projects included 132 KV Karakh Gird Station with Transmission line (Quetta) with cost of Rs 100 million, 132 KV Pasinzai Gird Station with Transmission line (Quetta) with cost of Rs 100 million, 132 KV Pringhabad Gird Station with Transmission line (Quetta) with cost of Rs 45 million and 500 KV Islamabad west with cost of Rs 10 million. The new schemes include Power Evacuation from Gaddani to National Grid (Faisalabad) (CPEC) (Rs 10 billion), Power Evacuation from Gaddani to National Grid (Lahore) (CPEC) (Rs 10 billion), Interconnection Scheme for Import of Power from CASA-1000 (Rs 4 billion), etc.

The documents further revealed that government has kept Rs 37.030 billion for Discos.  The Discos would start new projects The new projects include Power Distribution Enhancement Project (FESCO) (Tranch-III) (Rs 500 million), Power Distribution Enhancement Project (GEPCO) Rs 1000 million, and Power Distribution Enhancement Project (IESCO) (Rs 800 million), etc.