Sapphire Hydro gets generation licence for 152MW plant

Javed MirzaWeb Editor

26th Aug, 2021. 04:27 pm

KARACHI: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) has granted a generation licence to Sapphire Hydro Limited (SHL) for its 152.12MW Sharmayi hydel power project being setup on River Panjkora, in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa with an estimated cost of $400 million.

To harness the hydropower potential in the province, the government of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa set up Pakhtunkhwa Energy Development Organisation. PEDO has issued a letter of intent (Lol) to different entrepreneurs/project developers as independent power producers (IPPs) on Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) basis.

One such Lol was issued to the consortium of Sapphire Electric Company Limited and Sinohydro Corporation Limited China for the development of approximately 152MW Sharmayi hydel power project.

The sponsors of the project incorporated a special purpose vehicle in the name of Sapphire Hydro Limited (SHL) and approached the authority for the grant of a generation licence.

Sustainable and affordable electricity is a prerequisite for the socioeconomic development of any country. In fact, the economic growth of any country is directly linked with the availability of safe, secure, reliable and cheaper supply of energy/electricity.

The existing energy mix of the country is heavily skewed towards the thermal power plants, mainly operating on imported fuel. The import of fuel for electric power generation not only causes depletion of the precious foreign exchange reserves of the country but is also an environmental concern.

Therefore, to achieve sustainable development, it is imperative that indigenous resources are given priority for power generation and their development should be encouraged.

In its determination, Nepra observed that SHL would not only help diversify the energy portfolio of the country but also result in enhancing the energy security of the country by reducing the dependence on imported fuel, as well as help in reduction in carbon emissions by generating clean electricity; thus, improving the environment.

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