PEC approves mega solar park project
Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif presided over the fourth meeting of Punjab Energy Council (PEC) wherein a formal approval was given to master plan of Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park consisting of 10,000 acres of land.
Addressing the meeting of PEC, the chief minister said development work on the project will start forthwith and completed on emergency basis. He said that third party audit system of all development works in solar park had been declared essential. The meeting fixed beginning of next year as the target of starting energy production from solar park.
The meeting also gave approval to setting up of Quaid-e-Azam Solar Power Company.
The CM will be the chairman of the company while provincial minister for Energy will be its vice chairman. Six members each from public and private sector will be included in the company.
Sharif said the Punjab government was working on energy generation projects from various alternative sources and the most important project is setting up of Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park on 10,000 acres land in Cholistan (Bahawalpur) for which formal approval has been accorded to the master plan and funds are also being released immediately.
He said all necessary facilities would be provided in solar park including school, playground, community centre, mosque and dispensary so that engineers and other persons could perform their duties devotedly.
Sharif told that Punjab government will set up projects of 700 megawatts in solar park from its own resources and in the first phase, work will be started on eight projects of 50 megawatts each. He said that the solar park had been divided into 20 pieces, with each of 250 acres of land and solar power project of 50 megawatts will be set up on every 250 acres land.
He said there was also room for extension in solar park so that more energy could be generated from this park, if required.
He directed that concerned departments should ensure achievement of this target by working round the clock on the project. He said that practical steps should be taken for carrying out work on the project instead of wasting time in the meetings and lip service.
He said that chief executive officer having best abilities should be posted for the project. He directed Irrigation Department to complete the work of laying pipeline and installing tube-wells for the provision of water from canal to solar park within four months and NTDC to complete the laying of transmission line and the evacuation of electricity to be generated from solar park within six months. He directed that the quality of development works in solar park should be ensured at every cost. He said the Bank of Punjab in consultation with finance committee of Energy Council should submit practicable recommendations with regard to project financing in the next meeting.
The chief executive said that rapid progress should also be made with regard to setting up Punjab Energy Fund. He made it clear that Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park was the project of national importance and no stone should be left unturned for its early completion. He said that the resources should be utilized properly and no compromise be made on quality.
During the meeting, the Chief Minister was given detailed briefings by various departments with regard to master plan of the solar park project, construction of infrastructure, evacuation of electricity, laying transmission line, provision of water and other projects.
Provincial Minister for Energy Sher Ali Khan, Finance Minister Mian Mujtaba Shuja-ur-Rehman, Agriculture Minister Dr Farrukh Javed, chief secretary, chairman Planning and Development, Coordinator for Energy Shahid Riaz Gondal, Vice Chairman Investment Board, concerned secretaries and other senior officials attended the meeting.