ISLAMABAD - Despite getting huge subsidy of around Rs 70 billion in just three months (July-September) of the ongoing financial year 2012-2013, the Ministry of Water and Power has failed to control loadshedding in the country, it was learnt on Thursday.
Sources informed The Nation that Finance Ministry has released more than half of the allocated subsidy for the ongoing financial year in just three months (July-September). Sources further informed that the power sector subsidies had crossed Rs 70 billion mark in the first three months (July-September) of the current year 2012-2013 against the budgeted target of Rs134 billion for the entire year (July 2012-June 2013). A subsidy of Rs 25 billion is being provided to the power sector monthly and current pace of releases would cross Rs300 billion mark at the end of fiscal year 2012-13.
Sources said that projected fiscal deficit target of 4.7 per cent for the current fiscal year would be difficult to achieve because of considerable increase in power sector subsidies. Sources feared that fiscal deficit might exceed 6 per cent at the end of June 2013 due to the heavy power subsidy.
On the other hand, the country is still facing worst power loadshedding. The federal cabinet in its last meeting held on Wednesday has shown serious reservations over the un-ending power outages and summoned special meeting next week to devise plan to control it. According to the reports, the top officials of Ministry of Water and Power had to face tough questions in the cabinet meeting regarding unsatisfactory improvement in controlling power crisis, power production and non-recovery of bills in the country.
Sources further informed that PEPCO and Ministry of Water and Power are depending on subsidy instead of recovering power sector dues worth of Rs 400 billion from different institutes including federal, provincial, autonomous bodies and private departments. The independent economists and power sector experts believed that government could resolve the electricity crisis in the country if it recovers dues.