ISLAMABAD - Pakistan People’s Party yesterday lashed out at the federal government for not showing any major improvement during the financial year 2014-15 in the energy sector, as mentioned in the report of the Central Bank.

“The government failed to increase the power generation as the power supply could improve only by 1.6 percent during the last fiscal year over its corresponding year,” said PPP Senator Saleem Mandviwalla who is also a former finance minister. Referring to the recent report of State Bank of Pakistan, he said, “The report is a charge sheet against the incumbent government.”

The SBP report revealed Pakistan’s energy sector had not shown any major improvement in the financial year 2014-15. “The total power generation for FY15 increased by only1.6 percent, considerably lower than the demand. While we do not have a precise estimate on the demand for electricity, the empirical evidence suggests the demand for power rises more than proportional changes in per capita income,” stated the report.

Saleem Mandviwalla, who is also chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Finance, said the government had not passed on impact of tumbling petroleum prices in international market to the people of Pakistan, as oil prices globally fell by over 30 percent. He further said the government’s claim to eliminate power loadshedding was baseless. “There is no improvement in the transmission lines of the power sector,” he maintained.

Talking about circular debt, he said it had swollen to Rs 648 billion during the year 2015. The circular debt included Rs 335 billion of arrears and Rs313 billion of fresh buildup between June 2013 and June 2015. This debt is sourced back to payables from power vendors and suppliers; overdue bills from public and private consumers; line losses that are not recognised in the tariff; delays in the refund of excess GST collected by the FBR; delays in tariff determinations and accrued interest on past arrears, he concluded.