The government of Punjab has signed an agreement for the generation of the cheapest solar power in the history of Pakistan. The deal was inked on Thursday, under which private investors will set up a 100 MW solar power plant in Layyah district with a tariff of only 3.7 cents.
Punjab Chief Minister, Sardar Usman Bazdar, and Federal Minister for Energy, Omar Ayub Khan, were the chief guests at the signing ceremony of the agreement between the Punjab Power Development Board, Alternative Energy Development Board, and Zhenfa Pakistan New Energy Company.
While addressing the signing ceremony, Usman Buzdar said that Punjab has higher energy requirements than other provinces due to its population and developing economy.
Cheapest Energy Project
Buzdar said that the Punjab government is trying to get all the energy needs from its own resources under the Constitution of Pakistan. According to him, about 70% of the country’s electricity generation is used in Punjab.
Punjab pays 82% of the total revenue of the country from electricity.
CM Punjab lamented that the former government installed expensive power projects, which put a burden on the people. The PML-N government had signed a similar energy contract in Punjab at 14.1 cents per unit.
Unlike in the past, our government is moving towards sustainable sources of affordable electricity.
Educational and Health Institutions to Be Solarized
The Chief Minister said that schools, colleges, universities, primary health centers, and other government buildings will be shifted to solar power in phases. He noted that the work to shift 950 basic health centers in Punjab to solar energy is underway.
Punjab Energy Efficiency and Conservation Agency is providing technical advice for solar optimization of Lahore University of Engineering and Technology and other government institutions under the Department of Energy.
Energy Conservation Building Codes have been prepared for power saving in Punjab. By implementing these, the Punjab government is pursuing a policy of saving billions of rupees, he further added.
Buzdar said that the proposals to shift mega industrial units and projects like Orange Line Train to alternative energy sources are also being considered. There are many investment opportunities in the energy sector, the Chief Minister said, adding that the government is fully supporting the investors.
Speaking on occasion, Provincial Minister for Energy, Dr. Akhtar Malik, said that the Punjab government has signed a historic agreement.
In the past, the world’s most expensive solar projects were implemented in Pakistan, and the public treasury was ruthlessly wasted.
Dr. Akhtar said that so far, 8,000 schools have been shifted to solar power, and 15,000 more will be powered by solar energy in the near future.