Power crisis in Pakistan is artificial and it is by product of high level corruption by Federal government in collaboration with Wapda officials and IPP’s.
LFederal government is misleading Pakistani nation by giving impression that by producing more electricity through various means e.g. coal, solar or even water they can reduce load shedding.
Essentially, power crisis is a management issue and is also very much related to production capacity or pricing. Pakistan already has most expensive electricity in the world so increasing prices further is not the solution to this problem. Why should ordinary citizens pay for corruption and mismanagement of the state or Theft of Electricity by the Black sheeps, like some industrialists, Agriculturists and politicians ?
Federal government in Pakistan is only interested in maximizing the payments being made to Independent Project Producers (IPP). The production and demand figures are being concocted to fool the people.
For example, government is saying that production is 15000 Megawatt whereas demand is 18000 megawatt however people are facing 10 to 12 hours of loadshedding. This clearly means that federal government is lying to consumers and should be exposed by consumer protection groups, media, opposition parties, civil society and provincial governments. Most of the previous Governments are involved in corruption and also Ministry of Water & power and Government Functuries.15000 MW production for a country of 200 Millions is the Negligence of the present & previous Governments in resolving this serious national Issue. For example in 1984,only TEPCO (JAPAN) had 40,000 MW for a population of 2 Millions of TOKYO.If you compare it with K-Electric ( KARACHI), there is hardly 2800 MW capacity for 20 Millions people of Karachi.
Federal government also claims that it is giving subsidy of Rs. 6 or more to consumers. This is another lie, because inflated prices of electricity in Pakistan are due to high level corruption and mismanagement by government. Government of Pakistan continues to interfere politically in power sector to get maximum benefit for its cronies. Increasing power prices by another Rs. 6 per unit is like making honest consumers for large scale theft that is being supported by government.
PAKISTAN DO NOT WANT FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO RUN WAPDA,PEPCO ALSO COULD NOT COMPLETE ITS MANDATE, TO DEREGULARIZE WAPDA AND TO COMPLETE IT PRIVITIZATION WITHIN 2.5 YEARS AS PER WORLD BANK PLAN 1992 ,RATHER IT STARTED RUNNING IT TILL TO DATE . WAPDA should have been privatized in a transparent and honest manner while keeping rights of consumers in mind. We want government to establish a system where rights of consumers can be protected.NEPRA is the Regulator but it is also not protecting the Consumer’ rights, who are paying huge Bills of Electricity.
People’s party government paid up to Rs. 3000 billion to IPP’s in 5 years however people still faced up to 16 hours of daily load shedding with industry shutting down almost completely. Massive gas theft was also carried out during PPP government(2008-13) using power production as pretext. However, most of the gas was used by illegal industries and not for power production. PPP government illegally provided 600 megawatt power to KESC while also providing it gas. Now PML(N) has paid Rs. 500 billion to IPP’s but people are still facing massive load shedding. This is totally unacceptable.
PML(N) government wants to follow in the footsteps of PPP, and Musharraf government. Federal government in Pakistan has set up an unfair pricing for hydel power to discourage production of hydel power.
Energy crisis in Pakistan is due to corrupt federal government and solution is to this problem is to de-regularize and privatize Wapda.
Here is what should be done :
1). Control of power being produced by KPK and other entities should be handed over to respective provincial governments.
2). PROVINCIAL governments should be allowed to sell excess electricity to national grid using an open bidding system.
3). All power distribution companies should be either privatized or handed over to provincial government. Power distribution companies should be allowed to buy electricity from exchange (or power producers) independently as per their financial resources without intervention of federal government.
4). Provincial governments should be allowed to establish independent grid systems, which should then be linked to transfer/get power from central grid as needed.
5). Electricity should be bought/sold through an exchange using an open bidding system.
6). Prices of hydel power should be competitive and fixed through open market mechanisms as for other commodities.
7). Provincial governments should establish independent monitoring system that should monitor all the grid stations and power producing companies in order to monitor how much electricity is being actually produced and also how much electricity is being supplied to consumers under each and every grid stations.
8). Provincial governments should also monitor bills being given to consumers to protect customers from unfair billing.
Power crisis in Pakistan is primarily a management issue of Pakistan’s federal government. Other dimensions of this include supply/production demand and reducing prices by improving energy mix. Government can only resolve this problem by improving management through privatization of DISCOS and effective regulation to bring losses down to zero, some of which have 40% losses, whereas there are maximum 10% losses in the world most countries. we include Theft of Electricity in losses.
Improving management to bring down losses near to world standard level can be achieved , where as privatization can then take upto 1 or 2 years and capacity increase up to 5 to 10 years. So under no circumstances, power crisis needs 13 years to resolve. However, government continues to set wrong priorities by focusing on power production without improving management.
Since loadshedding is a management issue, and controlling power theft is the responsibility of provincial governments therefore provincial governments should not hesitate to take over DISCOS and invest in power grid(infrastructure), improve management of DISCOS to help cut losses to zero on immediate basis. DISCOS should then be privatized on merit.