Pakistan’s Persistent Power Struggles

By Syeda Saiqa Hashmat

K-Electric announces Load-shed Plan

To address the city’s persistent power shortage, K-Electric announced a change to its load-shed strategy. In low-loss locations within KE’s service territory, people have to bear 3 hours of load-shed, according to the new policy.

“This updated plan will provide a reprieve of 1-2 hours to locations that are already afflicted by load-shed, the updated load-shed schedule is available on KE’s website, the KE Live app, and the KE WhatsApp Self Service Portal. Consumers who have registered for KE’s 8119 service and who may be affected by the change will also receive an SMS notification,” said KE representative.

The government of Sindh has announced that marketplaces will close much earlier than usual

The electrical problem in other regions of the country has not been resolved, as all metropolitan areas have been subjected to four to five hours of unannounced load-shedding, while rural areas have been subjected to 12 to 13 hours.

A notification has been issued by Sindh govt that all markets and shopping centres has the be closed at 9pm. The notification mentioned that wedding venues, restaurants, and coffee shops must close at 11 pm, only petrol stations, medical stores, bakeries, and dairy shops owners can open shops 24/7.

Pakistan’s power crisis is just getting worse

Pakistan has been dealing with an energy and balance of payments crises, as well as diminishing dollar reserves. The IMF has been pressuring countries to reduce subsidies that lower the cost of gasoline and energy. The federal government has announced its own cost-cutting measures, including the gradual elimination of the fuel subsidy. While unpopular, these moves were necessary to keep the IMF happy, as the IMF’s bailout criteria must be met.

According to sources, Pakistan’s energy situation has worsened, with a power shortfall of 7,468 MW causing state-wide load-shedding of up to 10-18 hours.

The overall electricity generation capacity is currently 18,031 MW, with a demand of roughly 25,500 MW. The major reasons for power plant shutdowns have been attributed to a lack of fuel and technical reasons for a shortfall in energy generation. Hydropower generates up to 3,674 MW of electricity, compared to only 786 MW from government thermal power facilities. The private power producers generate a total of 9,526 megawatts (MW) of electricity.

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