Islamabad    -    A parliamentary committee was informed Tuesday that government will introduce cheaper electricity scheme during winter season in November which will ensure supply of low cost power to consumers.

The government is planning to provide electricity to consumers in winter on flat rates which will reduce power rates, said secretary power division Irfan Ali while briefing Senate Standing Committee on Power.  

The ministry of energy is working on a scheme of providing cheaper electricity to consumers during winter season which will be finalised during current month, he informed. By November, the new scheme for low cost electricity will be launched, he added.

“Looking at our revenue requirements, the government will introduce uniform rates in winter. Currently, the government is applying two different rates for peak and off peak hours which increases the end tariff for consumers. Usually during winter the consumers use more electricity in peak hours than off peak. Now the government will abolish peak and off peak rules and will apply flat rate throughout the day which will reduce rate of electricity for consumers,” he said.

“However the peak and off peak rules will continue after winter season,” he added.

“In December although the share of hydropower generation decreases but even then the government will ensure provision of cheaper electricity to consumers,” he added.

The secretary said, “Currently the circular debt is Rs1200 billion and unless it is reduced investment cannot come to the country.”

Regarding Sepco, he said that load-shedding had been eradicated on around 100 feeders of Sepco as there was no theft. He said in order to control theft ABC cables had been installed at some locations and by December theft will be eradicated on another 150 feeders, he added.

Senator Moula Bakhsh Chandio decried the loadshedding in Hyderabad and said day time load-shedding was playing havoc with business. He said load-shedding had made lives of residents of Hyderabad a living hell. “Why you are applying martial law-like rules in Hyderabad?” he questioned.  

The committee was informed by power secretary that enough progress had been done on the solar plant in Sanjwal but there were some problems related to wheeling which required amendment in Nepra Act. He said for wheeling Nepra Act was being amended to remove its shortcomings.

Irfan Ali said that currently there was 35,000MW electricity available in the system and some more projects were coming online. Senator Nauman Wazir said the government was required to make electricity market in the country so the Discos should get profit.

Regarding Pesco, the committee was informed that line losses were much higher than Nepra’s allowed limit. Power secretary said that these losses were being transferred to t consumers and they were paying for it.