Private Power and Infrastructure Board
PPIB issues LOS to first ever HVDC transmission line project in Pakistan
Friday, Aug 11, 2017
Private Power and Infrastructure Board has issued Letter of Support (LOS) to +- 660 kV Matiari-Lahore HVDC Transmission Line Project. The Project will have bipole HVDC technology, having approximately 880 kilometers length, with two converter stations one each at both Matiari and Lahore ends. The line will have transfer capability of transmitting 4000 MW. This is the first ever transmission line project in the private sector in Pakistan and first project under the Transmission Line Policy 2015 approved by the present government to incentivize private sector for development of transmission lines in order to support huge new power generation. Being implemented under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) agreement, the project sponsors are China Equipment and Technology Corporation (CET), which is a subsidiary of State Grid Cooperation of China (SGCC).  The Project is being developed on Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) basis for a term of 25 years. NEPRA has approved its tariff on 4th May 2017, and the Letter of Support (LOS) has been issued on 4th August 2017, after which the sponsors are required to achieve financial close. The Commercial Operations of the project is targeted in 2020. The project will primarily be used for evacuation of power from Thar based power generation projects which is another success of the present government to utilize the unused indigenous coal; at Thar lying unexploited for decades.

Currently PPIB is handling portfolio of thirty two (32) multiple fuel (coal, hydro and R-LNG) based independent power projects (IPPs) having cumulative capacity of more than 19,500 MW worth multi billion dollars. The portfolio contains sixteen hydropower project of 6,430 MW, thirteen coal based projects of 9,491 MW (five imported coal based projects of 4,423 MW, seven Thar coal based projects of 4,950 MW) and three R-LNG based combined cycle gas turbine projects of 3,633 MW. These projects are at different stages of development, some are in testing and commissioning phase, some are under construction, while others are under Financial Closing and Pre-Financial Closing stages. It is targeted that 7500 MWs are completed by 2018 and 14,000 MWs by 2021 from the private sector.

The HVDC transmission system is considered technically and economically more viable for power transmission over longer distances due to its higher transmission capacity, higher efficiency, lower losses and cost effectiveness etc.  The Matiari-Lahore Transmission Line will be first ever HVDC transmission line in Pakistan.

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