Chinese co achieves financial close of Power Projects

Financial close of 720MW Karot Hydropower project and 100MW ( 2×50 MW) second phase wind power project is achieved by China Three Gorges South Asia Investment Ltd.

The representatives of China Three Gorges South Asia Investment Ltd, Private Power Infrastructure Board (PPIB) and Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) had signed agreements two weeks ago. However, the Chinese company organized a ceremony at a local hotel in second week of March which was attended by the Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Asif.

Karot hydropower project is located on the Jhelum River which is the 4th among the 5 cascade HPPs to be developed along Jhelum River.

The levelized tariff of Karot hydropower project is Rs 7.68 per unit. The cost of Karot hydropower project is $ 1.7 billion whereas the cost of wind power project is $ 250 million, approximately adding upto $ 2 billion. Both projects fall in priority list of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Installed capacity of the project is 720 MW (4×180 MW) with average annual electricity output of 3206 GWh and annual utilization hours 4452 h. As a single power generation task hydropower complex, the project’s structure layout includes rock fill dam, spillway, powerhouse, diversion tunnels, head race power tunnels, tail race tunnel end, etc. The project is being developed under Power Policy 2002 on a Build-Own- Operate-Transfer (BOOT) basis with a five-year construction period and a 30-year concession period.

The project’s first unit will start generation from 2020 and the project will come online prior to its schedule. The company had started Karot hydropower project one year ago from its equity. The completion period of this project is five-year but the company will hand over the project prior to the deadline.

The company will hand over project to the Government of Pakistan after 30 years with 80 per cent project in Punjab (powerhouse) whereas 20 per cent is in AJ&K i.e. reservoir. The federal government will pay Water Usage Charges (WUC) to AJ&K and Punjab. However, after 30 years entire water usage charges will be paid to AJ&K.

Khawaja Asif speaking on the occasion said it’s a big step towards energy mix plan of the government. The wind project will be completed next year.

“We signed agreements on Dasu a couple of days ago and today we achieved financial closure of Karot and Three Gorges wind project. The same company is also working on 1124MW Kohala run of the river project,” he added.

According to the Minister, though financial close was achieved now, the company had started project from its own equity a year ago.

Khawaja Asif said that the World Bank played a pivotal role in Karot hydropower project. “Things which appeared impossible two-three years ago are now looking possible,” the Minister said.

Completion of Three Gorges Second Phase wind power projects (2x 50 MW) would be undertaken by Three Gorges Second Wind Farm Pakistan Limited (TGS) and Three Gorges Third Wind Farm Pakistan (private) Limited (TGT) which are subsidiaries of China Three Gorges South Asia Investment Ltd (CSAIL). The total installed capacity of the project will be 100MW and is being developed on Build- Own-Operate basis. The construction period of TGS is 18 months with an operation period of 20 years. The estimated annual on-grid electricity is 152.1 GWh with an annual full production hour of 3,082 hours and capacity index of 0.352.

Managing Director PPIB Shah Jahan Mirza while addressing praised IFC, an arm of the World Bank, for partially financing the project which was given two extensions. He said, Three Gorges is doing six energy sector projects with an investment of $ 6 billion in Pakistan which is not a small amount. He said, the government’s top priority is hydel generation and indigenous resources like coal.

Chairman China Three gorges (CTG), Dr Lu Guojun gave a detailed presentation on Karot hydropower project. He stated that for the first time, the company has appointed local Chief Executive Officer (CEO) namely Syed Husnain Haider of 590 MW Mahl hydropower project. Chairman CTG also appreciated Exim Bank of China and IFC for funding the project besides sharing financing details of the project.