LCCI decries power tariff hike plan
Lahore: The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry on Friday expressed deep concern over the reported plan to increase power tariff.
In a statement, LCCI President Mian Nauman Kabir, Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz Chan and Vice President Haris Ateeq said that on the one hand the government is planning to increase the power tariff that will be a big blow to the industrial sector in general and export-oriented industry in particular while at the other, the government has taxed the solar energy equipment to discourage the cheape source of energy.
“In Pakistan bulk of electricity is produced through oil-run power generators that has kept the energy rates volatile to the extent that it is fast crushing the economic activities”, the LCCI office-bearers said.
They said that hike in power tariff is a futile exercise and will not be doing any service to the government unless and until it makes a plan to remove inefficiencies in the power sector.
The LCCI office-bearers said that besides controlling line losses and electricity theft, the government will have to chalk out a plan to convert oil-based power generators to alternate sources.
They feared that the government’s plan to increase the power tariff will increase the incidents of electricity theft that is already one of the biggest challenges being faced by the power sector.
How the industry will remain competitive at such a high tariff of electricity which is one of the basic industrial raw materials”, they questioned and said that Pakistani merchandise are facing challenges to keep their existence in the international market while further increase in the power tariff will make the things more difficult.
Mian Nauman Kabir, Mian Rehman Aziz Chan and Haris Ateeq urged the government to shun the plan of power tariff hike and encourage the alternate energy resources in the larger interest of the industrial sector and the economy.