Nov 5, 2020
The Pakistan Industrial and Traders Association Front (PIAF) Chairman Mian Nauman Kabir has welcomed the termination of discriminatory peak-hour tariff system for commercial electricity users, with provision of uniform electricity rates round the clock, stating the overall energy relief package will promote trade and industry in the country that had suffered losses in the past due to high cost of electricity.
In a joint statement with vice chairman Javed Siddiqi he observed that electricity rates are high in Pakistan and it is for the first time that power rates have been reduced. He said the decision would help boost economic growth, strengthen industry, increase exports, and create employment opportunities.
Earlier, the industry was being charged the electricity tariffs on peak rates between 7pm to 11pm now if any industry has B1, B2 and B3 connections, it would get 50 percent relaxation on additional units.
Mian Nauman Kabir said that in view of boosting the production, it was vital to reduce the power price and eliminate the peak hours’ tariff system.
He added that the new relief package would help to expand employment opportunities, besides lifting economic activities in the country.
Pakistan’s exports have become expensive as compared to the regional and other competitors. The discounted power rates would provide a breather to the export sectors and indicate that the economy has now been moving towards the positive trend, he added.
Mian Nauman Kabir said that a strong infrastructure of energy was vital to help industries grow and compete with international market. He pointed that with 25 percent expensive electricity rates, Pakistan lagged behind India and Bangladesh in terms of exports.
It is extremely important for Pakistan to strengthen industrialization, which will lead to wealth creation and thus help pay off the debt, he said.
Mian Nauman said that it is right step in the right direction that the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) would be getting 50% tariff relief on the use of additional electricity, considering their bills of November 2019, during next six months, while all the industries would be provided with additional electricity on 25% reduced rates for next three years, he added.
The PIAF chief said that it was for the first time that such a big reforms package in the energy and power sector had been announced for the industries with the fixation of tariff for three years.
PIAF vice chairman Javed Siddiqi said the way the whole nation fought the COVID-19 pandemic, early opening of businesses and the construction industry, and the policy of smart lock down which helped check the spread of coronavirus and death rate, pushed the wheel of economy running in Pakistan earlier than various countries.
Business community is happy that the present government was bringing improvement in the power sector through various bold policy decisions.
Javed Siddiqi also applauded the government for making a power production agreement for alternative resources like solar and wind energies at the rate of Rs 6.5 per unit against the previous agreements of Rs 24 per unit.
It is good news for Pakistan in terms of the energy-mix that it would be meeting 25% and 30% of its electricity requirements through alternative energy resources by the years 2025 and 2023 respectively.