ISLAMABAD

The Chinese Government on Tuesday agreed to increase financing in Thar Coal which will increase the generation capacity of Thar Block-II from 660 to 1320 MW.

According to a handout, the decision was arrived on video conference between Secretary Ministry of Water and Power Mohammad Younus Dagha and Zhang Yuqing, Vice Administrator National Energy Administration China. The Chinese side also agreed another 660 MW a coal-fired power plant at Hub, Balochistan, also.

The meeting was held to discuss progress of CPEC projects. After deliberations, Ministry of Water and Power was successful in convincing Chinese side, that, expansion of Mining and Power Generation at Thar coal was critical for enhancing energy security and reduction in electricity tariff in the long run. Both sides agreed to add another project of 660MW for Thar Block-II and increase the mine size from 3.8 MTPA to 6.5 MTPA in priority list of CPEC projects.

In order to further expand power generation on cheaper fuel i.e. coal, Ministry of Water and Power and Chinese side agreed to add another unit of Hubco coal fired project (1x 660 MW) in priority list under the CPEC framework agreement. This will help project sponsors to secure financing from Chinese financing institutions on priority basis.

Both sides also recognised the importance of +660 KV HVDC Transmission line from Matiari to Lahore which is very critical for evacuation of power from various projects planned in south in future. Both sides expressed the resolve to expedite the completion of all necessary requirements for achieving financial close at the earliest, so that this project is available to transmit new generation.