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Pak, US ink pact for wind power

150MW wind farm to cost $375mn
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and United States (US) Sunday signed a wind power generation project which will be completed in two years at a cost of $375 million (Rs32 billion) to produce 150-megawatts of electricity. The agreement was signed by US Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke and Secretary Water and Power Javed Iqbal on behalf of their respective governments here at a local hotel.
US ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter, Director USAID Andrew Sisson, Chairman Alternative Energy Development Board Arif Alauddin and country representative of American Power Company (AES) Muhammad Iqbal were also present on this occasion. The project will be in three sites in the Gharo Corridor, in Thatta, Sindh near Karachi to utilise the winds of the area for producing 150 megawatts of power. The main objective of the projects was to improve the capacity of Pakistan government to address the country’s most critical energy needs. It will also reduce the dependence on imported fuel and oil and will save Pakistan $45 million (Rs3.8 billion) per year in fuel cost. The project using new technology of ‘clear’ power will serve about 600,000 homes in the area.
Richard Holbrooke addressing briefly on this occasion said it is a best example of private and public partnership between the two countries as Ministry of Water and Power will represent Pakistan while USAID and US Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and American Power Company (AES) Corporation, a private company are joining hands to address the important problem being faced by the people of Pakistan.
US ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter speaking on the occasion said the project will address the key issue of shortage of electricity in Pakistan. He said it will have impact on the future relations of two countries and provide a solid base to further enhance and promote these ties. Secretary Water and Power Javed Iqbal appreciating the contribution by the American government and personal interest taken by Richard Holbrooke said the project would further strengthen the bilateral relations. -APP


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