Thar coal only long-term solution to energy crisis in sight: Mian Zahid Hussain

Lahore, April 30, 2015 (PPI-OT): Thar coal is the best and most economical long-term resolution of the energy crisis which is critical for energy security and national development, said President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and former Minister Sindh, Mian Zahid Hussain on Thursday.

Kalabagh dam has become controversial therefore extra attention be paid to exploit the treasure buried in Thar, he further added. He said that Chinese investment in Thar coal and Indian interest to import coal are heartening developments which will bailout our economy reeling under severe energy crisis which will also cut oil import bill, earn forex reserves and provide millions of jobs.

So far Thar coal has not helped a lot to alleviate sufferings of people and economy despite the fact that country cannot afford to delay exploitation of one of the world’s largest lignite deposits estimated at 185 billion tonnes and spread over more than 9,000 km.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that coal reserves matching oil reserves of Saudi Arabia and Qatar can ensure energy security for centuries and earn sufficient money to upgrade transmission and distribution network reducing Rs 380 billion losses and theft to cut per unit cost by Rs 3.

Presently, he said, around 30 percent of energy is being imported disturbing budget while power requirement will swell to 45 thousand MW in a decade which calls for urgent steps. Introduction of LNG has resulted in closure of over 550 coal fired power plants in US but Germany, China and India are still generating 80 percent, 73 percent and 63 percent of electricity on coal while we are satisfied to generate 20 MW from coal.

Government should revisit issues like facilities, infrastructure, incentives, coordination, tariff and pricing to get maximum benefit of reserves, he demanded. In this regard, the present Govt. under the honourable leadership of Prime Minister, Mian Nawaz Sharif is working day and night and have made the economy much stronger and will further boost up things.

For more information, contact:
Mian Zahid Hussain,
Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF)
Tel: +92-343-2226888
Tel: +92-300-8233364

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