$15b worth of hydel power projects being developed

Producing hydel power is much cheaper and environment friendly compared to production through furnace and gas.

By Abdul Basit – Chief Reporter

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Published: Fri 27 Feb 2015, 1:03 AM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 11:58 PM

Dubai — More than 40 hydel power projects worth $15 billion are under development in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, or KP, and these projects offer 17 per cent guaranteed return on investment to investors, Provincial Minister for Power Atif Khan told Khlaeej Times on the sidelines of KP investment road show in Dubai on Wednesday.

These projects are ideal for investment and return on investment is much higher than other places, the minister said. “We have investor-friendly policy,” he added.

“We are open to all countries for investment and if they are overseas Pakistanis they will also get the same sovereign guarantee like other foreign investors,” he explained.

Pakistan faces an energy shortage and “it’s our priority area to attract foreign investors”.

Delegates during the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Investment Road Show in Dubai on Wednesday.

KP’s power shortage is around 1,000MW but the whole country faces a shortage of 5,000 to 6,000MW, he said, adding: “We have the potential to general 30,000MW hydel power in KP.”

Producing hydel power is much cheaper and environment friendly compared to production through furnace and gas, he said.

Separately, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf leader Asad Umer provided further details about power generation projects in the province to this scribe.

Why in KP?

The potential for hydropower business exists so much in in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Why?

Its significant number of existing rivers, gorges, river tributaries and canals with reasonable gradient

Its landscape, V-shaped valleys naturally carved out by rivers, ideal to build dams, tunnels and other civil works for hydel power development projects

Stable positive cash flows, high rate of return, exemptions of income tax, withholding tax on import of machinery and turnover rate tax

Umer said that three hydel projects are under implementation stage and five are about to begin the implementation process.

Some of the projects have already been advertised and huge interest were noticed from companies based in the Middle East, Europe and China.

About 26 projects worth $8 billion to $10 billion are ready for implementation, he said, adding: “Smaller projects take at least two years to complete while bigger take five years.”

KP is blessed with immense hydropower potential due to its geography and natural bounty of a number of main upstream rivers including Indus, Siran, Kunhar, Chitral, Pankora and Swat.

Most of the hydel projects of Pakistan, including the historical Tarbela and Warsak Dams, are areas located in KP.

Hydropower potential exists in KP due to significant number of existing rivers, gorges, river tributaries and canals with reasonable gradient; landscape, V-shaped valleys naturally carved out by rivers, ideal to build dams, tunnels and other civil works for hydel power development projects; and stable positive cash flows, high rate of return, exemptions of income tax, withholding tax on import of machinery and turnover rate tax.

— abdulbasit@khaleejtimes.com


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