IPPs have destroyed the Pakistan’s economy

On Sunday, Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President of Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW), said that Independent Power Producers (IPPs) have destroyed the country’s economy. He said private power plants are a big threat to the country’s economy and people, making national development impossible.

Dr Murtaza Mughal said in a statement today that the Government should buy all IPPs from their owners to eliminate this problem.

He said that at least five billion dollars would be required to purchase IPPs, which should be arranged by taking loans from international institutions.

The interest on the five billion-dollar loan will be nothing compared to the payments made to the IPPs. The country’s people will be saved from a great punishment if these units are bought.

According to the United Nations, elites are given benefits worth seventeen and a half billion annually. Five billion dollars can be managed even by reducing these benefits for one year.

In addition, government purchases of up to fifteen billion dollars annually and a good chunk of this money are embezzled. Capital can also be managed by reducing annual purchases.

Dr Mughal said that the energy sector’s circular debt had reached 2310 billion rupees in May, while payments to IPPs had reached 1800 billion rupees. The Government had to pay a late payment surcharge for the delay in payment.

He said that the role of private power producers is very significant among the factors responsible for the huge increase in electricity bills in Pakistan.

The IPP bill is the third largest debt owed to the Government after defence expenditures and foreign debt repayments. However, despite the payment of this amount, the circular mountain is increasing instead of decreasing.

He said that to reduce the debt, the Government repeatedly hikes electricity prices, which mainly benefits these companies. At the same time, the public is punished for nothing.

Dr. Mughal said that no political party speaks against IPPs because all the top leaders of political parties own these IPPs.

Seventeen percent of fixed profit is paid to these companies in dollars, and consumers must pay for this whether the companies generate electricity.

Apart from politicians, the power sector bureaucracy does not care about the plight of the public; all they care about is their privileges and facilities.

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