Chinese firm to build coal-fired power plant in Pakistan

A Chinese company has been given the go-ahead to build a 300 MW coal-fired power plant in Pakistan.

Pakistan‘s Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) this week issued a letter of interest to China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) for development of the project in the port city of Gwadar in Balochistan province. à‚ 

Under the plan, CCCC would develop the $600m project using imported coal.

CCCC will now need to obtain tariff approval from Pakistan’s National Electric Power Regulatory Authority before proceeding. Construction work is planned to begin after the project reaches financial close.

The project joins 12 others currently under review by the PPIB, including nine coal-based projects totalling 8220 MW and three hydropower projects totalling 2714 MW. The schemes are part of the $57bn China-Pakistan Economic Corridor initiative for energy and infrastructure projects, for which Gwadar is an important location.à‚ 

As part of Pakistan’s plan to end load shedding by adding 10 GW of power capacity, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif last week inaugurated the first 660 MW unit of a 1320 MW supercritical coal-fired power project in Sahiwal, with the second unit expected to come online in December.

Critics of the Gwadar project have noted that it is subcritical.

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