ISLAMABAD: To provide 5 MW electricity to Gwadar Free Zone (North), a successful joint feasibility survey has been completed by Quetta Electric Power Supply Company (QEPSC) and China Overseas Ports Holding Company (COPHC), paving a way for the provision of power in 60 days.
According to Gwadar Pro, a joint feasibility study finalized that after finding all physical and operational indicators smooth and positive, Gwadar Free Zone (North) is going to get regular and affordable 5 MW electricity in the first step.
If all goes well, in the second step, a 12 MW power supply will be ensured for Gwadar Free Zone (South) and Gwadar Port in the coming months, a QEPSC official told Gwadar Pro.
“As part of the first-step arrangements, we are gearing up electricity installation infrastructure and relevant apparatus like erection of polls with transmission lines”, the QEPSC official said.
The entire electricity paraphernalia will span over 3 kilometers that will connect Gwadar Port’s Grid Station to the area of Gwadar Free Zone (North), he mentioned.
“The Deep-Sea Port Grid Station was established in 2019 exclusively for Gwadar Port and Free Zone through 3 feeders. Since inadequate power was available at the disposal of QEPSC, the Grid Station had to rely on diesel generators for the production of thermal power using expensive fossil fuels at a high cost,” he added.
In a query, he said, “after a comprehensive feasibility study that continued for many months, now the good news is that we will turn off the 8.5 MW Diesel Generator and will link up Gwadar Port’s sole Grid Station with three sources.
One source is the national grid station of Quetta. The second source is Gabd-Remdan on the Pakistan-Iran border. The third source is the Nag-Besima section also on the Pakistan-Iran border.
“The new dispensation will augur well for investors of Gwadar Free Zone (North),” he added.
A COPHC official said that as matter of fact, the current electricity price at Gwadar Free Zone (South) and Gwadar Port is off the charts, incurring a heavy financial blow to Port’s operator and companies working in Gwadar Free Zone (South).
“We used to purchase petrol at Rs. 1.5 million for Gwadar Port and Rs. 3.5 million for Gwadar Free Zone (South) monthly. Chinese companies in Gwadar Free Zone (South) are charged around Rs. 85 per unit.
However, after the availability of 5 MW under new arrangements in the first step, electricity cost to industries and factories at Gwadar Free Zone (North) will be around Rs. 50 to Rs. 55 per Kilowatt.
The same reasonable cost will also be available for Gwadar Port and Gwadar Free Zone (South) in the second step later. It means investors and factory owners will enjoy a saving of around Rs. 30 per kilowatt.
This will directly impact financial leverage and production growth not only for current enterprises but also for potential investors,” COPHC official said.
Currently, in Gwadar Free Zone (South), around 51 companies have been registered. Around 10 companies including CBC, H.K. Sons, Agvon, Linyi Trade City, China Ecological Company, China Harbor Engineering Company, Hengmei, Jintai, and others are up and running their functions.
Meanwhile, in Gwadar Free Zone (North), currently three companies have been completing their construction works to run their industries in two months.
Many more including East Sea Group Limited entered into a deal to establish a $4.5 billion oil refinery in Gwadar Free Zone (North). Smooth and affordable electricity prices will be a big booster for them.