OUR STAFF REPORTER KARACHI - Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) Chief Executive Officer Tabish Gauher has said that the overall electricity supply situation in Karachi is quite satisfactory this year as compared to the previous years. Addressing a press conference at Defence Office, KESC CEO Tabish Gauher said that the basic aim and objective of KESC is to bring an improvement in the lives of Karachi citizens in respect of power supply. He added that it is undoubtedly very important for the economy of the country in general and for Karachi in particular. If we have been supplying uninterrupted power to around 45,000 industrial units of Karachi under an unambiguous policy, this brings a positive impact on the lives of millions of those laborers who work in these factories. He added that if we have exempted the low loss residential areas from loadshedding, where we have been able to control the issues of illegal use of electricity and non-payment of bills to a great extent, that offers us enough revenue to buy oil and gas and to serve those areas where more than 50 per cent of the supplied electricity is stolen. He adds that if we supply non-stop electricity to various Defence installations, hospitals and water pumps, we fulfil our national responsibilities. The crux of the matter is that despite of being a private entity, we are fully aware of our public service role and work day and night to accomplish our targets. He added that the population of Karachi is simply concerned about three areas of our performance: reduction in loadshedding, decrease in power tariff, and, better quality of customers service. During the past two and a half years, since the present administration took over the KESC affairs, with the investment of 600 million dollars, we have increased power generation capacity by over 400 megawatts, installed eight new grid stations, established 250 new feeders and put up over 1000 new PMTs. Pakistans largest under-construction power house, our upcoming prime 560 MWs Bin Qasim Power Station-II, would hopefully start producing electricity this year. These solid ground realities cannot be denied at any cost. He informed that total elimination of loadshedding is quite possible in Karachi if fuel is regularly supplied and the issues of illegal use of electricity and non-payment of bills are resolved once and for all. We have the basic infrastructure. He added if the government does not have money to provide subsidy to the citizens, and we have to buy four times expensive furnace oil to run our generation plants in case of shortage of gas, unfortunately, the already hard pressed consumers have to suffer this burden. Therefore, our demand is to increase gas supply to KESC in order to control the loadshedding as well as to arrest tariff hike. On the other hand, we also demand of the government to continue providing subsidy to the lower and lower-middle income group of the citizens to help them survive economic difficulties. As we have already disclosed, we have been working on a plan to regularly import LNG as an alternate fuel source. We are also progressing over a project to convert our oil-fired power plants to coal fire. Work is underway in Landhi to produce electricity from bio-gas. But all these projects require millions of dollars, and, about 1.5 to 2 years time.