300MW hydropower project PEDO, ADB sign agreement

DO, ADB sign agreement

The Pakhtunkhwa Energy Development Organisation (PEDO) to enter into an agreement with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for financing 300MW hydropower project construction at a cost of US$ 645 million on River Kunhar near Balakot Mansehra.

KP Secretary Finance Shakeel Qadir Khan signed the agreement with Asian Development Bank in presence of Chief Minister Pervez Khattak and Minister Energy and Power Muhammad Atif, Chief Planning Officer PEDO Syed Zainullah Shah and other high ranking Officers.

The dam site on Kunhar River is at a distance of about 03 km downstream from of Paras village, and 17 km upstream of Balakot town main bridge. The powerhouse is to be located on the left bank of Sangarh nullah confluence with Kunhar River, 1 km upstream of Dabrain village and 8 km upstream of Balakot main bridge. 78 meter high concrete gravity dam with live storage of 12.606 MCM, Crest Length 250m, headrace tunnel is 8420 m on the left bank with inner 8 m dia fully lined and is environment friendly, with no disturbance to local population whatsoever thus contributing a lot to the national energy production at no cost.

The project will also add over Rs8 billion per annum cash to the resources of the Province. The investment on the project is promising more than 17 per cent return per year. PC-1 of the project had already been prepared which will be approved from the Provincial Development Party this weak and sent to the Central Development Working Party i.e. the Federal Government. The ADB had already arranged funds for its financing, thus will have no problem for its timely release. The Project is to be completed within 60 months.

The Chief Minister KP Pervez Khattak on this occasion regretted that on the one hand there is shortage of electricity in the country while on the other hand KP is endowed with rich energy resources particularly environment friendly low cost hydel power but instead of helping the Province tap these resources the Federal Government was importing costly LNG. He also regretted that the federal government was neither finalizing a purchase agreement regarding the 74 MW hydel power generated in the Province to add it to the national grid nor was it paying the price of the electricity so produced and provided from the Pehure High level canal.

At a conservative estimate KP has the capacity of producing cheap and environment friendly 15 thousand MW hydel power but the federal government is least interested in its development. The KP government, he pointed out, had started work on about 2500 MW hydel power generation from its own meager resources, signed agreement for 668 MW with Private sector, 506 with FWO and 610 MW with China. The Chief Minister also said that neither WAPDA nor the Federal Government was interested in capacity building of the transmission lines in the smaller Provinces that is why if they produce electricity the system had no capacity to transmit it to the national grid and thus the consumers.