Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan, President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, All Karachi Industrial Alliance, and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain said solar energy is being prioritized worldwide on Wednesday. Still, this industry is being destroyed in Pakistan under a plan. He said that the Prime Minister and Ministers are making announcements to generate 9000-megawatt electricity through solar energy and expand the solar industry while the bureaucracy is bent upon destroying this important sector.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that countries where the sun does not rise even for a hundred days a year, are investing heavily in solar energy, while Pakistan, which is rich in this resource, is eliminating this industry.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that Pakistan imported oil and gas worth twenty billion dollars last year. In comparison, ten billion dollars could have been saved by producing ten thousand megawatts from solar energy.
He said that the import of solar panels has been subject to the central bank’s approval, and no LC has been opened for the past two and a half months.
The government moves have led to a shortage of solar panels and other equipment in the country and made it impossible for the solar companies to honour their commitments, he added.
He said that solar companies are suffering from huge losses while the companies which have imported hundreds of containers are also going bankrupt because they are not being given the clearance papers.
The goods, which were ordered at the rate of one hundred and eighty rupees per dollar, would now cost the companies at least 250 dollars, which would be enough to bankrupt them.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that NEPRA is currently acting in the interest of power distribution companies instead of the public and issuing orders to discourage solar power, which is deplorable.
Those who have installed solar systems and sold their electricity to distribution companies through net metering will see their profit reduced which is a major blow to the consumers and industry.
Consumers who install solar systems bear the entire financial burden themselves; they reduce the burden and losses of power generation and distribution companies and reduce dependence on imported fuels, but are still being subjected to the negative attitude of concerned government agencies.
The business leader said that promoting solar power will also reduce dependence on imported fuel and help cut the trade deficit, which is not acceptable to some influential circles.