ISLAMABAD - The Council of Common Interests (CCI) has approved transfer of power producers to provinces phase by phase. The issue of census was postponed till the next meeting.

The Council of Common Interests (CCI) in its 25th meeting held here at the Prime Minister’s office on Monday approved the National Energy (Power) Policy 2013-18.  The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, was also attended by chief ministers of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan. Secretary Inter Provincial Coordination Division, Ejaz Chaudhry presented the agenda items.

The prime minister said that presently the government had very limited resources to bear losses of state enterprises. In the past, unnecessary recruitments and corruption had resulted in mismanagement of these organizations and therefore in the national interest, privatization was the only solution, he added.

The prime minister said that governance was a collective responsibility and all the provinces had to work in tandem.

It was decided by the CCI to continue with the policy of 2011 regarding privatisation of power sector entities, including distribution companies (DISCOs) and generation companies (GENCOs).

The CCI approved issuance of Sovereign Guarantee for Thar Coal Mining Project. The prime minister said that Thar Coal was an important national project, which had to be fully supported as it would provide the much needed electricity at cheap rates.

Moreover, it was decided that sovereign guarantees would be provided for all the future coal based projects.

The CCI expressed its dissatisfaction over the performance of National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA), and decided that a diagnostic analysis will be conducted in order to improve its performance.

The prime minister directed that provincial consultation should be mandatory before appointment of board members in public sector companies, so that equal representation could be ensured.

The CCI was presented with Annual Report for the year 2012-13, which was approved. The Pakistan Engineering Council (Amendment) Bill 2013 was also approved by the CCI.

On the issue of purchase of 20 percent shares of Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL), Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL) and Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL) at their face value under the Aghaz-e-Haqooq-e- Balochistan, the prime minister directed the Finance Division to hold detailed consultations with the provinces.

Ministry of Water and Power was directed to hold meetings with all the provinces to discuss the principles and decide upon mechanism for at source deduction of outstanding power sector payables of provinces.

The CCI decided to expedite the transfer of properties in the name of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) so that revenue of US $ 800 million could be realised.