KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister, Syed Qaim Ali Shah has stressed the need of utilisation of indigenous resource of coal which are available on a large scale in Thar Coal Zone, Tharparkar – Sindh, for power generation.
The CM Sindh was speaking at a high level meeting regarding quarterly progress on Thar coal mining and power project by Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) and Thar Power Company (TPC) here at the CM house on Monday, said a statement.
The meeting broadly discussed the quarterly performance by the SECMC on coal project. Finally a steering committee was formed comprising the Advisor Finance, Chairman SBI, and the Secretary Energy to expedite the formal scientific and technical work.
A meeting would then be sought with the Prime Minister to impress upon the Federal Government to take both Gadani and Thar together. The committee formed would request Federal Government to form a High Powered Steering Committee to resolve all outstanding problems related to Ministry of Finance, Water and Power (PPIB, NEPRA, GENCO, and NTDC), Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources (PSO) and Ministry of Railways.
CEO Mining, Shamsuddin Shaikh delivered a presentation regarding the overall performance on the Thar Coal Power Project.
He said that the Government of Sindh and Engro have worked hard to bring the “Dream of Thar” closer to reality.
The cost of Thar coal project has been significantly reduced by 40 per cent resulting in competitive coal tariff versus the imported coal despite significant reduction in international coal prices.
A significant progress was achieved on financing and now Chinese banks are willing to support the power project without sovereign guarantee, and the principle approval by CCI to allow blending of Thar Coal in new 1200 MW power plant at Jamshoro.
He said that it confirmed that Thar coal can be safely transported to remote locations because significant progress on all infrastructure projects was done by the Sindh Government and due to this Thar is now being considered as a viable option for addressing current energy crisis and key to Pakistan’s energy security.
He further told the meeting that the Power Project can be completed in three years as of January 2014 – earlier than any other power project being envisaged.
The house was briefed about the cost effectiveness of Thar Coal Project and a comparison was made between proposed Power Plants in Gadani and Thar explaining different angles of both the projects.
The meeting after thread-bare discussion concluded and recommended to the Federal Government that Thar coal project which was already in execution since last four years be given first priority in addition to Gadani power project.
Advisor Finance Syed Murad Ali Shah, Additional Chief Secretary (Development) P&D Arif Ahmed Khan, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Naveed Kamran Baloch, the Secretary Coal and Energy,
Secretary Finance, Sohail Ahmed Rajput, Chairman Sindh Board of Investment (SBI), Muhammad Zubair Motiwala, President Engro, CEO Mining, and Energy Department’s consultant on mining and coal were among the participants of the meeting.