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PM inaugurates 84 MW hydropower IPP on Jhelum River

Prime Minister, Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, here on Monday inaugurated the first private sector 84 Megawatt run-of-the river Bong Escape Hydropower Project built on the Jhelum River seven kilometers from Mangla Dam in Azad Kashmir.

Speaking on the occasion, the Prime Minister said the project was a milestone in the country’s history and would pave way for construction of similar projects to cater to the power needs of various sectors of economy.

The Prime Minister thanked the HUB power company and others for extending help in the completion of the project.

Referring to the circumstances in which the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz assumed the government, the prime minister said they inherited soaring energy shortages, which caused a lot of economic and social problems.

He said the development of Pakistan depended on the uninterrupted electricity supply.

“We need sufficient power for our industry, schools, hospitals and other sectors. Our top priority was to retire the circular debt. We have paid its major part and the remaining will be settled soon.”

The Prime Minister said the government took a number of short-term measures and as a result of which there would be substantial decrease in electricity shortages in coming months.

Replying to a question, he said the government was thinking to replace the Chairman WAPDA.

President of Azad Kashmir Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob Khan, Prime Minister Chaudhry Abdul Majeed, Federal Minister for Water and Power Khwaja Muhammad Asif and Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs Barjees Tahir attended the ceremony.

Chairman Laraib Energy Limited Khalid Mansoor and Chairman HUBCO Hussain Dawood spoke about the salient features of the energy project.

The project would not only substantially improve power supply but also open new vistas of development, he added.

The project, completed at a cost of $ 215 million in 40 months, will produce 84 megawatts of electricity, which will be added to the national grid through a 132 KV transmission line.

The project built with the assistance of Asian Development Bank and a number of other financial institutions, has been completed by Laraib Energy Limited on built, operate and transfer (BOT) basis.

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