LAHORE - As the 969 megawatt Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project is quickly heading towards its completion, the Pakistan Industrial & Traders Associations Front (PIAF) has expressed the hope that the government’s commitment of ending loadshedding in 2018 will certainly be fulfilled. The completion of Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project will not only provide cheaper electricity but also help bridge demand and supply gap of electricity, leading to end of loadhsedding.

In a statement, PIAF Chairman Irfan Iqbal Sheikh appreciated the decision of Wapda to start construction of Diamer Bashma and Mohmand dam in 2018. He said the electricity price in Pakistan is on the higher side which is the main cause of price-hike in Pakistan. He said provision of cheap electricity will reduce industrial production cost that can provide relief to the public which is possible only if power is produced through hydel means.

The PIAF chairman was of the view that declining exports and widening trade deficit has posed a serious threat to economic growth and required to be tackled on priority basis. The government should also find a lasting solution to the problem of high prices of energy. He asked Wapda authorities to restrategise its priorities to increase water storage capacity and make energy mix in favour of hydel electricity.