Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) of the United States has shown its commitment to help Pakistan set up three to five wind power projects by attracting $300 to $500 million investment.
“We have committed to double our investment in Pakistan by attracting US investors to invest in the country’s wind power projects and other economic sectors,” OPIC Director of Renewable Energy and Sustainable Development Hassan Qayyum said.
He was speaking at a media roundtable event arranged by the US embassy on Wednesday.
OPIC is the US government’s development finance institution that mobilises private capital to help address development challenges.
Qayyum said that Pakistan was facing acute electricity outages within the range of eight to 12 hours in urban areas and 12 to 18 hours in rural areas in the summer season. “OPIC is considering to attract investment for Pakistan’s energy sector by exploiting the available avenues in renewable energy, including wind, and utilising waste management in all the municipal corporations,” he added.
OPIC, he said, is also working towards generating power through sugar mills by utilising baggase, adding that rice and cotton wastes are also being reviewed to meet the country’s energy requirements.
Qayyum said that Sapphire wind power project was in its final stages and would generate 50 MW electricity with the Nepra determined tariff of 13 cents per unit. “The project will be completed before December 2015 assuming that work on the Sapphire project starts next month,” he added.
Qayyum was reluctant to give the exact amount of US investment for the country’s energy sector, saying that OPIC would attract millions of dollars worth of investment. However, he added that one wind project generating 50 MW of power required an estimated investment of $100 million. “Almost $500 million investment will be made in Pakistan if OPIC executes three to five projects.” The OPIC board has also approved Dewan energy project in Pakistan, he added.