ISLAMABAD

Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar on Tuesday was informed that circular debt has been reduced to Rs 238 billion from Rs 295 billion due to the improved collection of the power dues.

Federal Minister for Finance, Senator Ishaq Dar chaired a meeting of the Committee constituted by Prime Minister on energy resource rationalisation for power sector.

Secretary Water & Power Ms Nargis Sethi briefed the Finance Minister on the overall recovery position and collection of the amount due. She informed that the circular debt has further been reduced to the level of Rs.238 billion which was stuck at Rs 295 billion a few weeks back. She told the Minister that she is planning to hold a meeting shortly with Discos to discuss improvements in the billing cycle. She assured the Minister that all available resources will be utilised to make a comprehensive collection model.

The Finance Minister directed Secretary Water and Power to take further steps to reduce the amount of circular debt of Discos and make people aware how they could reduce their bills substantially by conserving electricity during peak hours. The Federal Minister for Finance further directed Secretary Water & Power to direct Discos to reduce their line losses from the figure approved by Nepra.

Special Assistant to Prime Minister Musadik Malik briefed the Finance Minister that he and his team have been working hard on their strategy to reduce line losses. According to the model they have been following, LESCO will be able to reduce 5.5pc to 6.5pc losses for non-industrial connections and 1.5pc for industrial connections by mid-October. This exercise is expected to save Rs180 million monthly on sub division level.  From January onwards when this plan will be implemented on feeder level, the monthly saving will reach to Rs1 billion.

The Finance Minister directed Musadik Malik to make more teams for the implementation of this plan and replicate this model in one of the Discos in Sindh.

The meeting was attended by senior officials of the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Water & Power.