On Wednesday, the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) marginally reduced the return on equity (ROE) limit from 15 to 14.5 pc for three old 930 MW nuclear power plants.
The re-gulator said in a statement that this would provide a saving of Rs2.05bn per annum or around 25 paisa per unit for the remaining 25-37 year life of these ventures.
Under the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE) decisions of Aug 27, 2020, the management of three nuclear power plants located at Chashma (C-2, C-3 and C-4) submitted tariff petitions for a reduction in the ROE and freezing exchange rates to Rs148 per dollar.
The hearing on the tariff petitions was held by the regulator on January 13. The regulator said on Wednesday that it had approved freezing the exchange rate at Rs148 per dollar and reducing the ROE for the remaining life of these projects from 15pc to 14.5pc.
In 2011, a generation licence was given for Chashma Nuclear Power Plant Unit-2 (C-2) in Chashma, Tehsil Piplan, Mianwali District. The plant’s rated gross capacity is 340MW, with a minimum of 40 years (extendable for another 20 years). Licences were released in 2016 for C-3 and C-4. The rated gross plant capacity is 340 MW with a minimum of 40 years each (extendable for another 20 years).
In the meantime, the government has also forwarded the matter relating to the revised tariff for the IPPs to the formal approval regulator. In its terms of agreements, the government had concluded agreements with 46 IPPs for revision, allegedly offering a saving of Rs770bn. New tariffs for these IPPs will now be provided by Nepra.
Meanwhile, the government also announced the financial closure of four 250 MW cumulative solar PV projects. Out of 250MW, Zhenfa Pakistan New Energy Company (Pvt) Ltd is developing a 100MW project in the Layyah district of Punjab and the Norwegian company Scatec is developing 150MW (3x50MW) projects in the Sukkur district of Sindh in collaboration with Nizam Energy.
Last week, on behalf of the President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Private Power and Infrastructure Board issued the GoP Guarantee for projects. The Power Division said these four solar power projects would carry $148 million in investment.
The ventures are funded at an 80:20 debt-to-equity ratio. A imposed tariff of 3.73 cents per unit for the Zhenfa project and 3.66 cents per unit for the Scatec projects was approved by Nepra.
It is expected that these projects will produce 494.427 GWh annually. The regulator has approved a capacity factor of 21.51pc for Zhenfa and 23.27pc for Scatec projects based on the available solar resources.
Energy Minister Omar Ayub Khan said that clean energy technologies have evolved over the last decade and Pakistan has also begun to exploit the enormous potential of the country’s available alternative and renewable energy resources.
He said a new policy has now been announced by the government that sets a target of 20 percent renewable energy capacity by 2025 and 30 percent by 2030. Overall, by 2030, he said, the government plans to have a share of more than 60pc coming from clean technologies.