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CM claims loadshedding to end in 2017

ISLAMABAD: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Saturday said electricity loadshedding will end within three years as all ongoing projects in the energy sector will be completed by 2017.

He was addressing a meeting of the special committee on energy, constituted by the prime minister, presided over by Federal Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal in Islamabad.

The chief minister said despite problems and complications, full cooperation of China in the energy sector is highly commendable. He ensured that if the electricity crisis in the country is resolved, then agriculture, industries and economy will see great uplift, leading people and country towards prosperity.

He said special attention was being given to the implementation of energy projects in the country, with full devotion and dedication, stating that the government will not rest until the energy crisis is resolved.

CM Sharif said that increasing the production of cheap hydro power is the top priority of the government, adding that reliance on thermal technology for generating electricity was the biggest mistake of the previous governments.

He said steps were being taken for resolving energy crisis at federal and provincial level, under a multi-dimensional strategy, which includes implementing energy generation projects through coal, solar and other alternative sources. Eradication of electricity and gas theft, along with controlling circular debts, is also underway, the chief minister said.

The meeting also constituted a working group, comprising ministries of water and power, railways and planning, with regards to logistical support for energy projects at Muzaffargarh, Rahimyar Khan and Jhang.

Federal Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal and Federal Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Mohammad Asif also addressed the meeting. The meeting was informed that PC-1 of Guddani Project will be completed within a few days.

Published in Dawn, July 13th, 2014

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