Loadshedding to end by 2018: Nawaz Sharif

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340 MW Chashma Nuclear Project-III Inaugrated

Timely completion of the K-II and K-III nuclear power plants will strengthen bilateral relations with China

MIANWALI: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday inaugurated power production from 340 megawatt Chashma-III nuclear power plant ‘C-III’ near Mianwali.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, the prime minister slammed the opposition, calling on them to refrain from ‘sabotaging’ Pakistan’s national interests.
“We shouldn’t waste our time launching unnecessary protests,” he said.
“Ending loadshedding is one of our top priorities,” he said, reiterating his government’s commitment to end loadshedding by 2018.
The power project is a joint collaboration between the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) and China National Nuclear Corporation. It was executed by the PAEC under the guidelines of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
PM Nawaz said the Chashma-III nuclear power plant will add 600MW to the national grid, adding that it will also help PAEC in achieving the overall target of 8,000MW. He also directed the PAEC to accelerate the production of nuclear power plants.
The premier congratulated the participants and the Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) on timely completion of the project and thanked the China Atomic Energy Authority and the Export-Import Bank of China for extending technical and financial support to the endeavour.
The Chashma-III nuclear power plant was preceded by the Chashma-I and Chashma-II power projects.
Another unit of the same capacity, Chashma-IV, is expected to be completed in the coming year. The premier expressed hope that the Chashma-IV would be completed before its deadline.
Additionally, the Karachi nuclear power projects K-II and K-III are expected to add a total of 8,800MW electricity to the national grid by 2030 as a mid-term target for the PAEC.
The prime minister said that timely completion of the K-II and K-III nuclear power plants will strengthen bilateral relations with China. He invited Chinese investors to invest in various sectors in projects that are mutually beneficial.
All Nuclear Power Projects, including Chashma-III have been approved by Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority for Nuclear Safeguards as per International Atomic Energy Agency agreements thereby maintaining highest safety standards.
The project will also contribute to the overall economic development of the country through energy supply to industrial and commercial sectors.
Nawaz Sharif swept to power in 2013 vowing to eradicate crippling outages that brought Pakistan s $250 billion economy to its knees, but he now faces a race against time to stay true to his word before the next general election in 2018.
The Prime Minister has promised that all scheduled outages would end before the next election, likely to be in May, 2018. His office said generation would hit 26,000 MW, a 3,000 MW surplus.
Sharif’s opponents, however, say the government is so fixated on boosting power generation that it has ignored reforms, like privatizing distribution companies, that would modernize the market and lower the cost of electricity.