ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has directed the Power Division to use all resources to generate maximum electricity in the months to come, aimed at fulfilling the government's commitment of zero loadshedding from June this year, well informed sources told Business Recorder.

Presently, there is no unscheduled loadshedding in areas falling under Discos where ATC losses (beyond technical losses) are in the range of 0-10 per cent.

"Presently demand is around 18,000 MW whereas generation is also 18,000 MW. Some of the plants are shut due to less demand. However, Discos are adjusting supply in accordance with losses and recovery position," said an official.

Prime Minister Abbasi on April 24 held a detailed meeting on power situation wherein he directed the Power Division to calculate RLNG fired Gencos to avoid use of furnace oil. However, at the same time, he directed that furnace oil stocks should be ensured in case of any emergency.

According to official spokesperson on April 24, 2018, out of total 8620 feeders across the country, excluding KE, 7128 feeders remained within scheduled load management, which include 4633 feeders where zero load management was observed, 178 feeders in category 1 remained under fault/PTWs while 18 feeders of this category breached the schedule; 1110 feeders from category II & II observed load management of two hours while 46 feeders of these two categories remained under PTWS/Faults while 48 feeders remained out of schedule.

He said that a total 377 feeders remained under fault or PTWs and on 455 feeders approved work for maintenance was conducted whereas 162 feeders across the country remained in the out of schedule category.

The sources said, on March 6, 2018, the cabinet was briefed about the power generation based on different assumptions and subsequently, a meeting was held with Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of all Distribution Companies to share the information with them.

Discos' CEOs were asked to tune up their plans for summer 2018 including Ramazan. It was followed by another meeting with CEOs on March 31, 2018 in which they provided their input. It was decided that all Discos will be ready with contingency plans to handle load management in the best possible manner depending on available generation which will remain unpredictable over the next many months. They were also asked to devise an effective media strategy to disseminate timely and accurate information.

Secretary, Power Division, Yousuf Naseem Khokhar further stated that as per project management of Balloki, the plant would become available by June 1, 2018. And schedule of Bhikki would be updated after April 7, 2018. Regarding Haveli Bahadur Shah (HBS) plant, 2018, he apprised the meeting that this plant has been considered on the grid station on April 14, 2018 on the assurance of project management given to the Prime Minister on March 28, 2018, provided insurance issue is resolved by the Ministries of Finance and Commerce. He stated that Neelum Jhelum Hydropower project and Tarbela-IV are unlikely to be functional within their given timeframe. Therefore, RLNG-fired Balloki, Bhikki power plants, Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project and Tarbela-IV are unlikely to be included in the projected generation plans for Ramazan.

However, when CEO, National Power Parks Management Company Limited (NPPMCL), Rashid Langrial stated that Haveli Bahadar Shah power plant is already online but the project will achieve COD by May 10, 2018, adding that it can be achieved even before this date depending on the testing. He further stated that Balloki will start generation by the end of next month but its COD will be in June; RLNG-fired power plants will deliver 2000 MW electricity during Ramazan.

In reply to question, he said that the issue of insurance of M/s Haveli Bahadar Shah has been resolved as NICL has allowed the company to get insurance from another company.

Likewise, two units of Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project have also started generation whereas the third unit is expected to synergize in June 2018.

Secretary Power Division further stated that due to non-availability of power generation from these power projects, they will have to resort to load management plan in summer 2018 including during Ramazan. However, utmost efforts would be made that no loadshedding would be carried out at the time of Iftar, Taraveeh and Sehri through closure of night shifts (eight hours) of the independent industrial sector, if required. He stated that Discos were advised to engage elected representatives, trade bodies and community leaders to inform them about the load management position. In this connection it was agreed that hence forth meetings with CEOs of Discos would be held fortnightly to keep the situation under constant review.

Secretary, Power Division presented following two options for load management plan for summer 2018: Option-I, introduction of 1-2 hours of loadshedding of category- 1 feeders and Option-II, introduction of one shift of loadshedding on independent industrial feeders, during Iftar time along with option-I, depending on the situation of generation/demand .

Secretary Power Division also stated that the possibility of implementing both options would be dependent on the generation situation, and as required.

He highlighted categories of feeders and consumers based on percentage of losses across the country as follows: (i) zero loadshedding for losses 0-10 on 5.297 feeders i.e. 14,915,521 consumers which is 60.72 per cent of total consumers; (ii) 1-4 hours loadshedding on 1,621 feeders for 10-20 per cent losses ;(iii) 4 to 6 hours loadshedding on 441 feeders with 20-30 per cent losses; (iv) 6-8 hours loadshedding on 298 feeders for 30-40 per cent losses; (v) 6-8 hours loadshedding on 40- 60 percent losses; (vi) 8-10 hour loadshedding on 580 feeders with 60 to 80 per cent losses; and (vii) 12-16 hours loadshedding on 501 feeders facing losses of 80 per cent and above.

During discussion on this issue, Secretary to Prime Minister argued that electricity demand has been increasing considerably in the country due to increase in usage of electrical appliances. He stated that it was earlier noted that all LNG power plants, NJHPP and Tarbela-IV would be functional before summer 2018 and there would be no loadshedding as surplus power would be available. However, none of these projects would achieve their CODs by their given time lines which would entail significant shortfall of power.

He further stated that the present government has already committed to the nation that there would be no loadshedding in summer 2018 including Ramazan due to availability of additional power.

"Now in view of the shortfall, loadshedding would be carried out in summer 2018, therefore, it would affect the narrative of the government," he said and supported the Minister for Power's suggestion not to allow loadshedding on feeders where ATC losses, beyond technical losses, are 0-10 per cent which is 60.72% consumer shares. He stated that he has always been emphasizing that actual demand and generation in the country should be worked out prior to making commitment to the nation about zero loadshedding. The Prime Minister endorsed his views and directed Power Division to: (i) present actual demand and supply of power during the period from April to July, 2018; (ii) no loadshedding be carried out at the time of Iftar, Traveeh and Sehri through closure of night shift (eight hours) of the independent industrial feeders; and (iii) all power plants to remain on line and generate power to their maximum capacity irrespective of fuel source.

Secretary to the Prime Minister highlighted that previously calculated demand and supply data had proven inaccurate, especially demand side needed to be ascertained scientifically to get a true picture for an effective load management plan.

After detailed discussion, Power Division was directed to present actual demand and supply of power during the period from April to July 2018; and to ensure all units of existing power plants remain on line irrespective of fuel source and that they generate power to their maximum capacity. It was also decided that no loadshedding for domestic consumers will be carried out during Ramzan 2018 at the time of Iftar, Traveeh and Sehri through closure of night shift (eight hours) of the independent industrial feeders. —MUSHTAQ GHUMMAN