PM Shehbaz greenlights 10,000 MW solar power projects

Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif on Thursday green-lighted the construction of solar plants having a combined capacity of 10,000 MW, as the government strives to save valuable foreign exchange that is being used to import fuel.

“Instead of generating electricity by importing expensive oil from abroad, electricity should be generated from solar energy,” said the PM during a meeting, according to a statement released by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

Import of petroleum products: PSO receives Rs62bn for confirmation of LCs PM Shehbaz directed concerned agencies to start work on the solar power projects on an emergency basis. He also instructed to hold a pre-bid conference for all stakeholders next week.

Under the project, 10,000 megawatts of electricity will be generated from solar power. In the first phase, government buildings, electric and diesel-powered tube wells and low-unit household consumers will be provided with solar power.Petroleum group imports show negative growth on MoM basis

PM Shehbaz also wants relief provided to electricity consumers by next summer by constructing solar power plants soon. Pakistan, which is a net importer of oil and other energy commodities, will be able to save billions of dollars, read the statement.

On Monday, PM Shehbaz said that the country needs to shift its power generation capacity to solar and wind power, stressing that the current electricity generation mechanisms are costly and depleting the national exchequer.

During a briefing at the Mohmand Dam site, PM Shehbaz said Pakistan had been facing a very acute problem of expensive power generation due to importing expensive fuels and then subsidizing them for the consumers.

The prime minister said that the timely completion of hydel power projects in the country and tapping of other natural resources like solar and wind “are our future and we need to immediately shift in that direction, otherwise the economy will continue bleeding annually.”

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