Punjab to set up 300mw solar projects

CM says projects will be launched in Cholistan and industrial estates

LAHORE

A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the Punjab government and the German company, AEG, for cooperation in solar energy sector under which solar energy projects of at least 50 to 100 megawatt will be set up in Punjab in 2013 and of at least 300 megawatt in 2014.

Energy Secretary Jehanzeb Khan and AEG representative Karsten Weltzien signed the agreement on Tuesday.

Talking to the media during the ceremony, the CM said that the agreement between Punjab government and the AEG for cooperation was a welcome step. He said Germany had made remarkable progress in solar energy sector and the 125-year old German company had expertise in solar technology. He said that the company had generated 30,000 megawatt power in Germany which had comparatively lesser sunlight and was almost double of the total power generated in Pakistan.

Shahbaz said the agreement would be implemented expeditiously and solar energy projects would be completed at the earliest. He said the agreement had been signed as a result of his recent visit to Germany.

He said Pakistan had high grade coal as well as vast potential of generation of hydel power. He said that there is a vast scope of setting up solar energy projects in Cholistan. He expressed hope more power generation companies of Germany would come to Pakistan and invest in energy sector, adding that the Punjab government was working with Turkey, Germany and China in energy sector. He said that earlier solar energy projects were costly but now there had been a substantial decrease in their cost. He said that solar energy projects of 50 to 100 megawatt would be set up in Cholistan while solar energy projects of 20 megawatt each would be established in industrial estates. He appreciated the services of his chief coordinator in Germany Shahid Riaz Gondal. Replying to questions of the media, Shahbaz Sharif said that the country was plunged in darkness while its economy has been ruined by the loot and plunder and wrong policies of Zar Baba & 40 Thieves who would be held accountable by the people in the elections. He said that federal government created hurdles to the energy projects of Punjab government; however it surmounted all difficulties and was working on power generation projects expeditiously.

Replying to a question about metro bus project, the CM said that work was in progress speedily which would cost Rs 30 billion. He said the opponents of Punjab government had no concern with the welfare projects of the masses; therefore, they were telling a lie about the cost of the biggest public transport project in the history of the country.

Earlier, a two-member German delegation met the CM and speaking on the occasion, Shahbaz Sharif said that Pakistan was facing serious shortage of 6000 megawatt electricity.

Eduard Wagner of IRGS, Advisor Zaeem Hussain Qadri, secretary Energy, secretary Planning & Development and other officials were also present.

dengue seminar: Shahbaz Sharif has said that dengue virus has been controlled to a large extent through the best strategy and hard work; however, all the government machinery is still active in this regard.

He said it had been decided to hold a two-day international anti-dengue seminar in the provincial metropolis on 10th and 11th November in Lahore. He also lauded the performance of staff who worked during anti-dengue campaign.

Shahbaz was presiding over a meeting to review arrangements for anti-dengue international seminar at Chief Minister’s Secretariat here on Tuesday.

Addressing the meeting, he said the seminar to be held would also be attended by anti-dengue specialist doctors from Sri Lanka, Thailand and Singapore and commendatory certificates and cash prizes would be given to the government officials, civil society members, doctors, nurses and paramedics. He said merit-based selection of the persons showing good performance should be ensured. The chief minister especially referred to the cooperation of Sri Lankan experts during anti-dengue campaign, and said that the master trainers who had got their training from Sri Lanka were rendering commendable services.

The CM was also informed that a poster exhibition would also be held on the occasion of international anti-dengue seminar.

PMDFC: Shahbaz Sharif has said that the Punjab Municipal Development Fund Company (PMDFC) was established for capacity-building of the local government.

He was presiding over a briefing meeting at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat here on Tuesday. The CM said that the Punjab government had promoted transparency and good governance in all sectors; therefore, the process of purchasing machinery for local government projects should also be completed in a transparent manner. He said that along with Lahore, the latest method for solid waste management and sanitation be adopted in all other districts, besides proper maintenance of the machinery of the PMDFC should be ensured.

The Chief Minister also ordered third-party audit of the machinery of PMDFC.

The meeting was attended Dr Zafar Iqbal Qureshi, secretary Planning & Development, secretary Local Government and managing director PMDFC.