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Federal Minister for Planning, Development & Reform and Statistics Division Makhdum Khusro Bakhtyar has said that the Government is committed to systematic and cost effective development of energy sector and in this regard is working on integrated energy planning for sustainable development.
The Minister, in his capacity as Chairman, was chairing the 2nd Steering Committee meeting on Integrated Energy Planning (IEP) for Sustainable Development here at Islamabad on Thursday. Secretary Planning Zafar Hasan, Chairman Prime Minister Task Force Nadeem Babar, Special Assistant to PM on Power Shahzad Qasim, representatives from USAID Pakistan and US Department of Energy were also present in the meeting.
It is pertinent to mention here that USAID Pakistan and Planning Commission had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on November 8, 2016 for cooperation in integrated energy planning. In line with the provision of MoU, a Steering Committee on IEP was formulated to take the initiative forward.
The Minister said that the Government is making endeavors to provide affordable energy to the masses and a robust energy policy is being formulated in coordination with all stakeholders for sustained economic growth.
Makhdum Khusro said that lack of an integrated energy planning in past affected our energy sector and consequentially the country’s economic growth. He added that the present government is fully committed to steer this initiative to meaningful policy formulation and its implementation adding that the government has also constituted a task force on energy in this regard.
Makhdum Khusro highlighted that the Government is also working on a renewable energy policy to tap the indigenous resources. He noted that the cost of renewable energy technologies has come down adding that the Government will encourage competitive bidding for tariff determination for future renewable energy projects which will bring per megawatt generation cost down. The Minister said that the Government will prioritize the energy infrastructure needs in the next PSDP to bridge the gap between transmission and distribution part of energy supply chain.
Speaking on the occasion, Mission Director USAID Pakistan Jerrry Bisson said that the Agency will continue to extend cooperation for integrated energy planning initiative.
The Minister also called for expansion of the Steering Committee to include Chairman Prime Minister Task Force on Energy and Special Assistant to PM on Power.