Blackouts Plague Pakistan As It Fails To Pay Chinese Power Firms

Due to Pakistan’s inability to make payments to the Chinese power supplies, the country lies in the abyss of electricity outages which is disrupting life and business amid this unbearable heatwave.

They have shut down multiple plants because the Pakistani government has failed to pay dues to the tune of 300 billion rupees (USD 1.5 billion).

Ahmed Naeem Salik, a research fellow at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad, said that the current power generation capacity in Pakistan is 41,000 megawatts, while consumption is around 28,000 MW.

“We have 13,000 MW of extra electricity capacity, but still there is a lot of load shedding,” he said, using industry lingo for supply interruptions. This, he said, “is mainly because we have to pay the loans [to Chinese companies] that we are unable to pay, and hence [Chinese] have stopped power production.”

Sharing his grievances on the ongoing unbearable heat wave amid the power outages, Waheed Ahmed, a taxi driver in Rawalpindi, said that the power goes out for 8 hours a day.

Another Pakistani, Mumtaz Baloch, who is a government employee, said the situation in the rural area of the southwestern province of Balochistan is even worse. Baloch said that the electricity there comes just six hours per day, as per Nikkei Asia.

“We are used to living without government-supplied electricity as our forefathers did in ancient times,” she said.

Speaking with Nikkie Asia, Umar Nadeem, the head of the advisory at Islamabad consulting company Tabadlab drew a relation between the power outages and the subsequent economic fallout.

He said that the power cuts will have a direct impact on economic activity and it will hit the lower-income citizens hardest, as they feel the pressure of 13 pc plus inflation. “Disruptions in electricity supply and a corresponding drop in income levels will make coping with the rising costs even more difficult,” he said. (ANI)

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