The completion of important dams and hydropower projects, including Mohmand Dam, Dasu Hydropower Project, Tarbela Four (Extension) and Diamer Bhasha Dam, by 2027, will bring in 9620 megawatts of additional electricity and 11.3 million acre-feet of water in the country.
This was revealed to the Prime Minister Imran Khan during a meeting, which reviewed the progress on important hydropower projects and the related matters.
The meeting was attended by Minister for Water Resources Muhammad Faisal Vawda, Secretary Water Resources Muhammad Ashraf, Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) Chairman Lt Gen Muzammil Hussain and others.
The meeting was informed that due to the above projects, over Rs. 23 billion will be spent on social development which in turn will help create 23,000 job opportunities.
The prime minister was told that the construction of Mohmand Dam, which started in mid-2019 and is expected to be completed by 2024, will enable the country to store 1.2 million acre feet of additional water and generate 800 megawatts of additional electricity.
Dasu Hydropower Project (Phase 1), which will start in 2020 and will be completed in 2024, will help generate 2360 megawatts of additional electricity. Similarly, the Dasu Hydropower Project (Phase 2), to be started in 2025 and completed in 2027, will add 2160 megawatts of electricity.
The meeting was told that the construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam, which will start in 2020 and complete in 2027, will enable the country to store an additional 8.1 million acre feet of water and generate 4500 megawatts of additional electricity.
Regarding the Tarbela Four (Extension) Project, the prime minister was informed that the World Bank had termed it the most successful project, which had been completed timely and at a low cost.
As regards the Dasu Hydropower Project, the WAPDA chairman apprised the prime minister that the issue of availability of land for the project had been resolved.
About the Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project, Lt Gen Muzammil informed the meeting that the project, after its completion in April 2018, is running and has so far generated 6.2 billion units of electricity. The project had added electricity worth Rs. 54 billion to the national grid, he added.
Giving a detailed briefing on the construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam, he said that the project will enable 6.4 million acre feet of live water storage, besides making available 18.1 billion units of renewable energy per annum.
The prime minister, while expressing his satisfaction over the progress on hydropower projects, said enhancing the water storage capacity and generating cheaper electricity were among the government’s priorities.
He added that the effective use of precious natural resources like water plays a pivotal role in agriculture and the country’s economic development. The prime minister said cheaper electricity will not only help overcome the shortage of electricity but also promote the industrial sector and make the country’s products competitive in the international market.