The Government is taking all possible steps to bridge the gap between demand and supply of electricity in order to accelerate the socio-economic growth of the country and bring relief to the people.

This was stated by the Federal Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Muhammad Asif while chairing 97th meeting of the Board of PPIB (Private Power and Infrastructure Board) held in Islamabad on Wednesday.

Ongoing private power sector projects were discussed in the meeting in the context with the overall electricity situation in the country.

Khawaja Asif said the government is optimizing the available resource base for upcoming power generation projects while at the same time making the existing power generation and distribution facilities efficient and also controlling line losses.

The Minister advised that while remaining within legal bounds, we should provide maximum facilitation to the projects so that maximum number of megawatts are materialized. The Board was briefed that Expressions of Interest (EOIs) were invited through local/international press for establishing coal-fired power plants at the 6600 Megawatt Gadani Power Park.

However due to prevailing situation in the country, the expected response could not be achieved and many prominent investors have requested extension of date in submission of EOIs.

The Board approved the extension in closing date by 29 September 2014 so that a healthy competition is generated. Hydropower projects were also discussed and it was decided to extend the Letter of Support of 870MW SukkiKinari hydropower project on River Kunhar, District Mansehra, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa which is included in the "early harvest projects" priority list of the China Pakistan Energy Corridor. This extension will allow the project to take necessary measures to implement the project at the earliest.

The Board also desired removal of all bottlenecks for early development of 132 MW Rajdhani Hydropower Project in AJ&K with due cooperation of the Government of Azad Jammu & Kashmir.

PPIB acts as agent for and on behalf of the AJ&K Council for development, facilitation and implementation of power projects in AJ&K under the Minister for Water and Power.

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