KCCI, majority interveners boycott Nepra’s hearing

Web DeskWeb Editor

02nd Sep, 2021. 06:54 pm

KARACHI: The Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) along with the majority of interveners boycotted the proceedings of the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority’s (Nepra) public hearing on Thursday to strongly protest a very arrogant, indecent and non-business-friendly attitude of the Nepra chairman, a statement said.

According to a statement issued by the KCCI, everybody, who attended the Nepra hearing on “KE’s request regarding monthly fuel charges adjustment for July 2021 and quarterly adjustment for the quarter ending June 2021”, felt that this hearing was conducted for cosmetic purposes only”, as the decision has been taken well before calling this hearing.

There was no patience on the part of the Nepra chairman to listen to the very valid points put forward by the interveners, especially Arif Bilwani who is considered as an expert on energy matters in Karachi.

He was presenting some very important technical points but was interrupted to such an extent that the Zoom connection was shut off on the orders of the Nepra chairman in a very arrogant manner.

Perhaps this attitude also reveals that this increase in the tariff due to the rise in the furnace oil prices was because of the undue permission granted by the Nepra to continue the operation of Bin Qasim Power Plants, which are running at a capacity of 31.8 per cent, whereas a new plant, which is under installation, will function at 60 per cent that means if it is commissioned and comes into production, the KE would file a reduction in the fuel cost adjustment in the next quarter and the same was the position with Gul Ahmed and Tapal regarding the efficiencies and the cost of generation.

If the same quantum of power is given to KE by enhancing the grid capacity where there was a surplus power of 6,000MW to 8,000MW and the government was also in a very difficult position due to piling up of the circular debt, the Nepra would have advised the government last year that instead of allowing the low efficiency power plants, electricity can be provided to KE through the grid to curtail the circular debt by utilising the surplus electricity in the KE system but it seems that Nepra was trying to avoid this.

The Karachi Chamber demanded that Nepra’s hearing held on Thursday should immediately be declared as “null and void” and a fresh date for hearing may be announced at the earliest.

The KCCI also demanded from the competent authorities to go through the recording of today’s (Thursday) proceedings and decide for themselves that this hearing was called for listening to the consumers of KE or to fulfill the requirement of just calling the consumers.

This time it was just calling the consumers but not listening to them at all, which the Karachi Chamber and all other interveners condemn in strong words.

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