ISLAMABAD - Speakers at Pakistan Renewable Energy Conference, 2011 expressed a note of satisfaction that the coming months would witness a lot of activities in renewable energy sector, especially wind as background infrastructure, required for development and implementation are in place. The first day conference, which was organised by the US Embassy in Pakistan in cooperation with Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB), was opened by Arif Alauddin, CEO AEDB, and largely attended among others by the members of the diplomatic community, senior executives of companies working in RE Projects, media, engineering companies, government functionaries etc. The CEO, AEDB presented a detailed picture of the RE potential in Pakistan, the infrastructure required to harness the potential, the AEDBs role, investors confidence in RE projects, requirement of bankable data, availability of finances and machine, technical manpower etc. He said that after having addressed all major issues, local and international investment is now being attracted towards RE sector in Pakistan. He was positive that after the financial close of FFCL and now other projects, in line for their financial close and the RE Policy, 2011 going to be soon in place, investment scenario in RE sector in the country would further improve. Husnain Zaigham, Director General, NEPRA said that they dealt with three things relating development of power projects - generation license, grid code and tariff. He said that Gird Code was one of the major hurdles in the development of RE sector in Pakistan, especially wind sector. AEDB has now developed a Grid Code in consultation with NEPRA. Presently, tariff is being determined on cost plus mechanism and now NEPRA is in full agreement with AEDB for announcing feed in tariff for RE technologies once modalities are sorted out. He said, generation license procedures have been simplified for smaller RE projects to facilitate RE policy. Tanvir Waqar, Senior Manager Wind Power Project FFCL said that their wind farm project, the first ever-formal project in the sector in Pakistan would achieve its financial close during the current month. He said that FFCL since its inception has made investments worth $1.7 billion. He said that FFCL faced challenges in realisation of their wind farm project, as there was no model available in Pakistan. Iqbal Shaikh Country Director AES Pakistan said, the successful achievements of FFCL has paved way for other RE, especially wind projects in pipeline; the AES Pakistan Power would be the next one, he hoped. He said, FFCL had undergone a rigorous exercise but set benchmarks for others. It came out as a model project in wind sector, and now the entire background infrastructure, including IA, EPA, Tariff, Grid Code was in place for the other projects. He said that the most important issue in development of a wind farm was land; and the other was circular debt, which made lenders too choosy to invest in this sector. Brig. (Retd) Azam Effendi, a knowledge engineer, pointed out many other obstacles in development of RE sector in Pakistan. He said that interest groups were out to retard pace of development in RE sector; these must be identified and dealt with accordingly.