PR ISLAMABAD - Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) delegation met with Prime Minister in Islamabad on Monday. On the occasion, CPNE lauded the efforts mode by the government to improve the security situation in Karachi.

Further, the role of power utility in improving law and order situation was discussed and they voiced their concern to the Premier that K-Electric's tariff has been completely changed and significantly reduced which would mean that K-Electric would not be able to sustain its operation or invest in power infrastructure in future. This would significantly setback the progress mode in Karachi, including reviving industrial growth and improved law and order situation. Further, Shanghai Electric Power (SEP), which has publicly announced interest of acquiring K-E with an aggressive investment plan of over $9 billion, will walk away and terminate their plan to acquire K-E. The government and the regulator should create an investor friendly environment with focus on attracting investment to ensure improved service for consumers.

On this issue, the Prime Minister informed that government understands the need for investment in power infrastructure of Karachi and its implications on everyday life of Karachi and the economy of Pakistan. He was fully aware of K-Electric's issue and assured the group that GoP supports a right tariff regime for KE, which ensures continuity of government policies, provides incentives for performance improvement and offers reasonable return. He further added that the acquisition by SEP is critical to encourage foreign investment in the country and this will also be a game changer in the power sector of the country. He was aware that this is the largest investment in the power sector by a single company in Pakistan. SEP is a strategic power utility operator and will benefit Karachi in terms of improved and reliable supply of power. He also highlighted that GoP owns 24% share in K-E and hence has vested interest in K-E as a shareholder. Above all, smooth and reliable supply of power is of utmost importance to GoP, he added.

He also mentioned that Abraaj Group is a private equity firm, whose business model is to turn loss making companies into sustainable profitable entities and then sell it to a specialized strategic operator and earn a reasonable return.