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PPIB accused of giving new projects to poorly performing IPPs
05-15-2009, 08:04 AM
Post: #1
PPIB accused of giving new projects to poorly performing IPPs
MUSHTAQ GHUMMAN
ISLAMABAD (May 15 2009): The Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) has been accused of allocating all prime locations in NWFP and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) to the Independent Power Producers (IPPs), which has performed poorly, well-informed sources told Business Recorder on Thursday.

The top PPIB management came under fire at a recent meeting of the board wherein the representatives of NWFP and AJK were very clear in fixing the responsibility of what happened in the allocation of sites to the IPPs. The meeting was presided over by Minister for Water and Power Raja Pervez Asharaf.

"Almost all the good sites in NWFP and AJK have been allocated to the IPPs, performance of most of them is not satisfactory. The project sponsors are requesting extensions again and again," the sources quoted the officials, representing NWFP and AJK as saying.

PPIB Managing Director Fayyaz Elahi maintained that all extensions had been given to hydro IPPs in accordance with the 2002 Power Policy and due to legitimate reasons. However, the projects under 1995 policy, including Matiltan Project, were under the purview of the provincial/AJK governments and if they felt that these projects were not performing well, they might cancel them, the sources quoted the PPIB chief as saying.

Similar complaints have also been lodged by the Punjab government at the last meeting of the PPIB board held on May 4. After detailed deliberations, the board constituted a committee to take the provincial governments on board for drafting amendments in the 2002 Power Policy, particularly the hydropower projects.

The committee comprises Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) Chairman Shakeel Durrani, PPIB Managing Director Fayyaz Elahi and representatives of the provincial governments.

The committee has been given one month to resolve the issues raised by the provincial governments. The sources said that the provincial governments were annoyed over the PPIB for not taking them on board and given appropriate time for comments on the proposed amendments in the policy. "The provinces were insisting that they should be allowed to seek investment directly for hydropower projects," said the sources.

Similar reservations were also expressed by the NWFP government. When one of the participants was asked what was discussed in the PPIB Board meeting, he said nothing was discussed; there was a review of the progress on ongoing projects, most of which were behind schedule. The board had also been informed that in pursuance of its earlier decision, a team comprising senior officials of the PPIB and WPPO visited the sites of 10 upcoming IPPs, which were at advance stages of implementation, said the sources.

The site visits, according to the PPIB claim, were carried out with an objective to review and monitor the physical progress and ascertain their likelihood of achieving Commercial Operation Dates (CODs) as per schedule. Fayyaz Elahi revealed that Attock Gen Power, with a capacity of 165 MW, had already started operations and two more projects namely, Hubco Narowal and Liberty Power Tech had achieved financial close and commenced construction activities.

http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?id=38407
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