The government has decided to resume some of the renewable energy projects stopped by the previous government in March 2018.
The partial revival of these projects is subject to a revised tariff mechanism. The government has also decided to give a decisive role to the National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTC) to provide an interconnection facility.
This decision has given an opportunity to the Sindh government to provide an interconnection grid facility for renewable projects (RE). The Sindh government had issued letters of interest (LoI) for these projects but could not proceed because of the government’s decision of March 2018.
As per the details, a recent meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE) took this decision. The meeting was presided by Finance Minister Asad Umar.
It also reviewed a 20 percent increase in revenue collection by the power distribution companies via fuel price benefit, increased tariff, better recovery, and loss reduction.
The CCoE also noted an increase in the collection of power bills. From November 2018 to January 2019, the collection of power bills reached Rs. 244 billion from Rs. 204 billion, marking an increase of almost Rs. 39.7 billion.
A major increase of Rs. 16 billion came from the increased tariff, while Rs. 13.3 billion of revenue owed came from improved recovery from consumers. Around Rs. 6.1 billion were saved in three months from loss reduction and Rs. 4.5 billion through higher fuel price adjustment.
The meeting also approved a proposal from the Power Division that all further RE investments will be considered as per the Renewable Energy Policy 2019. The said policy provides for a framework that is in line with the prevailing international market norms and greater consumer benefits.
The stakeholders are reviewing the policy presently. The CCoE will receive it formally later; however, the guiding principles have been approved already.
The meeting also decided that the projects for which the LoS have been granted by the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) will be allowed to proceed according to the Renewable Energy Policy 2006.
However, the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) will review the rates for projects that faced a year’s lapse since tariff determination by the regulator.