ISLAMABAD-National Assembly Standing Committee on Economic Affairs Division was informed on Wednesday that Dasu Hydropower (Phase-I) project has been delayed for almost 7 years due to delay in land acquisition which was caused by incomplete land record, illegal construction and inadequate security at project site etc. 

Meeting of the Standing Committee on Economic Affairs Division was held under the chairmanship of Mian Najeeb ud Din Awaisi, MNA. The Joint Secretary Ministry of Economic Affairs (EAD) briefed the Committee regarding the top 3 problematic projects relating to Federal Energy and Water Sector, including Dasu Hydropower Stage-I project; Jamshoro Power Generation Project and Transmission Modernization project Phase I. He informed the Committee that the Dasu Hydropower (Phase-I) project was signed on 25-8-2014 and its closing date was 30-06-2022 which was revised to 31-5-2022. Funds committed for the project amounts to $ 588.40 million out of which $ 313.00 have been disbursed with undisbursed amount to the tune of $ 275.40 million. The project has been delayed for almost 7 years due to delay in land acquisition which was caused by incomplete land record, illegal construction and inadequate security at project site etc. 

The cost of land acquisition increased from Rs. 19 billion to Rs. 37 billion. Other reasons for delay include delay in fulfillment of covenant on Operational Health Safety and slow decision making on the part of WAPDA. The Committee decided to visit the Dasu Hydropower Stage I project to see the physical progress on the project and state of issues. Joint Secretary EAD informed the Committee that the Jamshoro Power Generation Project for installation of 600 MW supercritical coal-fired unit was signed on 12-02-2014 with original closing date 31-03-2019 and revised closing date is 30-6-2023. The Asian Development Bank has committed to finance $ 684.454 million, out of which $ 410.819 have been disbursed and undisbursed amount is $273.635 million. Issues of the project include purchase of 100 acres land as ash pond land and signing of Engineering, Procurement & Construction contract for LOT-II of the project. The Provincial Cabinet, Sindh deferred the case of Purchase of Ash Disposal Land with the direction that fresh clearance report from Sindh Environmental Protection Agency be submitted as the previous one was provided in 2014 which will require further 4-6 months. The decision regarding signing of Engineering, Procurement & Construction contract for Unit II is pending at the Ministry of Energy (Power Division). The Committee recommended that the government should decide, without further loss of time, whether or not to install Jamshoro Power Generation Project Lot II. Joint Secretary EAD informed the Committee that the National Transmission Modernization Project was initiated for increasing capacity and reliability of National Transmission System and modernization of key business processes of NTDC. The signing date of the project was 13-6-2018 and its closing date 31-01-2024 with cost of $424m, out of which $36.1m has been disbursed while non disbursed funds amount to $388.90m. The Committee was informed that the project was delayed due to late hiring of consultant and project management staff; delay in awarding of contracts and land acquisition issue for Islamabad West. The Committee recommended that the project management unit staff must be hired/appointed purely on merit basis. 

Members Ali Zahid, Syed Javed Hasnain, Dr Darshan, Ms Shahida Akhtar Ali and Salahuddin, MNAs attended the meeting.