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Pakistan faces increase in electricity shortage to 5,500 MW

Pakistan faces increase in electricity shortage to 5,500 MW

Pakistan faces increase in electricity shortage to 5,500 MW

Pakistan faces increase in electricity shortage to 5,500 MW

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ISLAMABAD: A prolonged power outage has crippled Pakistan as the electricity shortfall reached 5,500 megawatts, according to reports on Sunday, citing sources.

Major cities are experiencing up to six hours of load shedding, while rural areas face up to eight hours. In regions with high line losses, load shedding extends to 12 to 14 hours.

The country’s electricity demand stands at 24,000 megawatts, but the total production is only 18,540 megawatts, according to Power Division sources.

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An official report from the power ministry highlighted that Pakistan’s power sector circular debt had surged to Rs 2,635 billion by January 2024. Despite significant increases in power tariffs and fuel adjustments, the circular debt has continued to rise.

The debt was recorded at Rs 2,310 billion in June 2023, showing a jump of Rs 325 billion in seven months. The report attributed this increase to poor performance and low recoveries by the distribution companies (DISCOs).

Additionally, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has demanded further hikes in electricity prices, citing an extra burden of Rs 150 billion on the power sector.

According to sources, the IMF has asked the Ministry of Energy to raise the electricity tariff by Rs 5 to Rs 7 per unit in July.

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