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First phase of USAID-funded power project completed

Financial assistance from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has helped the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) complete the first phase of the rehabilitation of Tarbela Hydel Power Station, restoring 128 megawatt (MW) electricity to the system. This was said by Wapda Chairman Syed Raghib Shah while briefing the US Ambassador Richard Olson during his visit to Tarbela Power Station. “We appreciate the support of the US to the energy sector in Pakistan. Projects like these will help minimise power shortages in the country,” said Shah. Elaborating on the two-pronged strategy for optimal utilisation of hydel resource, he said that Wapda is constructing new projects and rehabilitating and up-grading its aging power houses. Wapda projects will help provide cheap electricity to the people, he said. Ambassador Olson said, “The United States understands that Pakistan is facing an energy crisis and we are committed to doing our part. The work completed here at Tarbela contributes enough electricity to supply two million customers, and helps provide relief to those suffering from extensive power shortages.” USAID provided $16.5 million to Wapda to repair three power generation units and train staff in order to restore electricity generation at Tarbela. In addition to Tarbela, the US is also funding other high impact projects in the hydropower sector, such as rehabilitation of the Mangla Power Station. Moreover, the US government is co-financing the completion of Gomal Zam and Satpara dams which will add 35 MW of electricity and irrigate more than 200,000 acres of land.

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