Electricity in Pakistan (Urdu: بجلی) is generated, transmitted, distributed, and retail supplied by two vertically integrated public sector utilities: Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) for all of Pakistan (except Karachi), and the Karachi Electric (K-Electric) for the city of Karachi and its surrounding areas. There are around 42 independent power producers (IPPs) that contribute significantly in electricity generation in Pakistan.
Electricity generation has increased by 3.18% in 2015 as a result of Government of Pakistan (GoP) efforts and China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The country has begun diversifying its energy producing capacity by investing in coal, nuclear energy, solar energy and wind energy to help offset the energy shortage while larger projects greater than 1000 MW such as the Diamer-Bhasha Dam, Kohala Hydropower Project, Pakistan Port Qasim Power Project, Sahiwal Coal Power Project, Thar Engro Coal Power Project, Hub Coal Power Project and new nuclear plants are now under construction or planned.
Pakistan electricity sector is a developing market. For years, the matter of balancing the country's supply against the demand for electricity had remained a largely unresolved matter. The country faced significant challenges in revamping its network responsible for the supply of electricity. Electricity generators were seeking a parity in returns for both domestic and foreign investors indicating it to be one of the key issues in overseeing a surge in electricity generation when the country was facing growing shortages. Other problems included lack of efficiency, rising demands for energy, and political instability. Provincial and federal agencies, who are the largest consumers, often do not pay their bills.At one point electricity generation had shrunk by up to 50% due to an over-reliance on fossil fuels. The country was hit by its worst power crisis in 2007 when production fell by 6000 Megawatts and massive blackouts followed suit.Load Shedding and power blackouts had become severe in Pakistan before 2016.
As late as 2015 massive long-standing electricity shortages continued with long-standing failure to provide reliable service and rampant corruption being met by public protests, unauthorized connections, and refusal by consumers to pay for intermittent service.
- Electricity – total installed capacity: 25,100 MW (2015)
- Electricity – Sources (2014)
- fossil fuel – 14,635 MW – 64.2% of total(oil-35.2% + gas-29%)
- hydro – 6,611 MW – 29% of total
- nuclear – 1,322 MW – 5.8% of total
- average demand-17,000 MW
- shortfall-between 5,000 MW and 6,000 MW
There are four major power producers in country: WAPDA, K-Electric, IPPs and Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC).
The break-up of the installed capacity of each of these power producers (as of Jan-2012) is as follows:
- Tarbela Dam, Tarbela, Haripur District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) 3478 MW
- Mangla Dam, Mangla, Mirpur District, Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) 1000 MW
- Ghazi-Barotha Hydropower Project, Attock, Attock District, Punjab 1450 MW
- Warsak Dam, Peshawar, Peshawar District, KPK 243 MW
- Chashma Barrage, Chashma, Mianwali District, Punjab 184 MW
- Duber Khwar Dam/Duber Khwar Hydroelectric Plant, Pattan, Kohistan District, KPK 130 MW
- Allai Khwar Hydropower Plant, Allai Tehsil, Battagram, Battagram District, KPK 121 MW
- Khan Khwar Hydropower Plant, Besham, Shangla District, KPK 72 MW
- Jagran Hydropower Plant AJK 30 MW
- Jabban Hydropower Plant, Jabban, Malakand District, KPK 22 MW
- Rasul Barrage, Punjab 22 MW
- Dargai Hydropower Plant, Dargai, Malakand District, KPK 20 MW
- Gomal Zam Dam, Khjori Kach, South Waziristan Agency, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) 17 MW
- Nandipur Hydropower Plant, Gujranwala, Gujranwala District, Punjab 14 MW
- Shadiwal Hydropower Plant, Shadiwal, Gujrat District, Punjab 13.5 MW
- Kurram Garhi Hydropower Plant, Kurram Garhi, Bannu, Bannu District, KPK 4 MW
- Renala Khurd Hydropower Plant, Renala Khurd, Okara District, Punjab 1 MW
- Chitral Hydropower Plant, Chitral, Chitral District, KPK 1 MW
- Total Hydel 6,823 MW
- Guddu Thermal Power Plant, Guddu, Sindh 1655 MW
- Muzaffargarh Thermal Power Plant, Muzaffargarh, Muzaffargarh District, Punjab 1350 MW
- Jamshoro Thermal Power Plant, Jamshoro, Jamshoro District, Sindh 850 MW
- Faisalabad Gas Turbine Power Plant, Faisalabad, Faisalabad District, Punjab 244 MW
- Multan Gas Turbine Power Plant, Multan, Multan District, Punjab 195 MW
- Kotri Gas Turbine Power Plant, Kotri, Jamshoro District, Sindh 174 MW
- Larkana Thermal Power Plant, Larkana, Larkana District, Sindh 150 MW
- Faisalabad Steam Power Plant, Faisalabad, Faisalabad District, Punjab 132 MW
- Shahdra Gas Turbine Power Plant, Shahdra, Lahore, Lahore District, Punjab 59 MW
- Panjgur Gas Turbine Power Plant, Panjgur, Panjgur District, Balochistan 39 MW
- Quetta Thermal Power Plant, Quetta, Quetta District, Balochistan 35 MW
- Pasni Thermal Power Plant, Pasni, Gwadar District, Balochistan 17 MW
- Total Thermal 4811 MW
WAPDA’s total hydel and thermal capacity is 11,272 MW. Hydel electricity generated by WAPDA varies between two extremities, i.e., between minimum of 2,414 MW and maximum of 6,761 MW depending upon the river flow.
- Korangi Power Complex, Combined Cycle Power Plant (KPC) 247 MW
- Korangi Gas Turbine Power Station, Korangi (KGTPS) 100 MW
- Gas Turbine Power Station, SITE (STGTPS) 100 MW
- Thermal Power Station, Bin Qasim (BQPS-I) 1260 MW
- Combined Cycle Power Plant (BQPS-II) 560 MW
- Combined Cycle Power Plant (BQPS-III) Construction Initiated 900 MW
K-Electric total generation capacity is 1756 MW.
Independent Power Producers (IPPs)
- AES Lalpir Limited, Mehmood Kot, Muzaffargarh District, Punjab 362 MW
- AES Pak Gen, Mehmood Kot, Muzaffargarh District, Punjab 365 MW
- Altern Energy Limited, Tehsil Fateh Jang, Attock District 29 MW
- Atlas Power, Sheikhupura District 225 MW
- Attock Gen Limited, Morgah, Rawalpindi District 165 MW
- CMEC Power (Pvt.) Limited 330 MW
- DHA Cogen Limited, Karachi, Karachi South District 94 MW
- Eastern Power Company, Pasrur, Sialkot District 152.5 MW
- Engro Powergen Qadirpur Limited (Formerly Engro Energy (Pvt.) Limited), Ghotki, Ghotki District, Sindh 226.5 MW
- Fauji Kabirwala Power Company Limited (FKPCL), Kabirwala, District Khanewal 157 MW
- First Tri-Star Modaraba 110 MW
- Foundation Power Company Daharki Limited (FPCDL), Daharki, Ghotki District, Sindh 179 MW
- Grange Holdings Limited Power Plant, Arifwala Tehsil, Pakpattan District, Punjab 165 MW
- Green Electric (Pvt.) Limited 188 MW
- Gujranwala Energy Limited (GEL), Gulistan Group, Sanguwali, Wazirabad Tehsil, Gujranwala District, Punjab 201.5 MW
- Gul Ahmad Energy Limited (GAEL), Korangi District, Karachi 136 MW
- Habibullah Coastal Power Company (HCPC) (Pvt.) Limited, Quetta, Balochistan 140 MW
- Halmore Power Generation Company (Pvt.) Limited, Bhikki, Sheikhupura District, Punjab 225 MW
- HUBCO Narowal Power Plant (HNPP), Narowal District, Punjab 225 MW
- HUBCO Hub Power Plant, Hub, Lasbela District, Balochistan 1292 MW
- Intergen (Pvt.) Limited 165 MW
- Japan Power Generation, Lahore 120 MW
- Kohinoor Energy Limited, Lahore 131 MW
- Kot Addu Power Company Limited (Privatized) 1638 MW
- Liberty Power Limited, Ghotki 232 MW
- Liberty Power Tech. Limited 202 MW
- Lucky Electric Power Company Limited 660 MW
- Nishat Chunian Power 200 MW
- Nishat Power Limited 200 MW
- Orient Power Company (Pvt.) Limited 225 MW
- Radian Energy Power Generation Company (Pvt.) Limited 164 MW
- Rousch Power, Khanewal 412 MW
- Saba Power Company, Sheikhupura 114 MW
- Saif Power Plant Qadirabad, Sahiwal 225 MW
- Sapphire Electric Company Limited 235 MW
- Siddiqsons Energy Limited 350 MW
- Sindh Nooriabad Power Company Phase-II (Pvt.) Limited 52 MW
- Sitara Energy 80 MW
- Southern Electric Power Company Limited, Raiwind 110 MW
- Star Power Generation Limited 133.5 MW
- Tapal Energy Limited, Karachi 126 MW
- Uch (Uch-I and Uch-II) Power Limited, Dera Murad Jamali, Nasirabad 990 MW
Total generation capacity of IPPs by the end of 2016 was 11612 MW.
Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission
- KANUPP 137 MW
- CHASNUPP-1 325 MW
- CHASNUPP-2 325 MW
- CHASNUPP-3 340 MW
Total electricity generated from PAEC is 1127 MW.
Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO)
- Nandipur Power Project 425 MW
- Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park, Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur District, Punjab 150 MW
- Yunus Energy Limited, Jhimpir, Sindh 50 MW
- Metro Wind Power Co Limited, Jhimpir, Sindh 50 MW
- Tenaga Generai Limited, Gharo, Sindh 49 MW
- Gul Ahmed Wind Power Limited, Jhimpir, Sindh 50 MW
- Master Wind Energy Limited, Jhimpir, Sindh 52 MW
- FFC Energy Limited, Jhimpir, Sindh 50 MW
- Zorlu Enerji Pakistan, Jhimpir, Sindh 56 MW
- Tapal Wind Energy Limited, Jhimpir, Sindh 30 MW
- HydroChina Dawood Power Limited, Gharo, Sindh 49 MW
- Foundation Wind Energy-I Limited, Gharo, Sindh 50 MW
- Foundation Wind Energy-II Private Limited, Gharo, Sindh 50 MW
The total power generation capacity of Pakistan is 21,143 MW and the electricity demand (as of April 2010) is 14,500 MW and PEPCO is merely generating 10,000 MW.
- Electricity – generation: 109.25 TWh (2015-2016)
- Electricity – generation by source (2015-2016)
- fossil fuel: 64% of total
- hydro: 30% of total
- nuclear: 5% of total
- Electricity – consumption: 90.36 TWh (2015-2016)
- Electricity – exports: 6.01% (2015-2016)
- Electricity – imports: .49% (2015-2016)
- Electricity Consumption per Capita = 970 kWh/Capita (2015-2016)
Governance and sector reform
Recent reforms include the unbundling and corporatization of the Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) into 10 regional distribution companies, 4 government-owned thermal power generation companies and a transmission company, the National Transmission and Despatch Company. The hydropower plants were retained by WAPDA as WAPDA Hydroelectric. All are fully owned by the government. K-Electric Limited (formally known as Karachi Electric Supply Company), which is responsible for power generation and distribution in the Karachi area, is listed on the stock exchanges and is privately owned. Privately owned independent power producers generated 53% of the country’s power in FY2016.
Effects of natural and man-made disasters
During 2010 Pakistan floods and 2005 Kashmir earthquake power stations, power distribution and transmission and other energy infrastructures were damaged. During the floods and rainfalls the recently constructed Jinnah hydroelectric power plant was flooded in addition to severe damages to transmission and distribution network and installations while several power plants and refineries were threatened by rising waters and had to be shut down. Natural gas field output had to be reduced as the flood waters approached the wells. There has also been some concern by Pakistani nuclear activists over the effect of natural disasters on nuclear plants specially over the Chashma Nuclear Power Plant, since the plant lies over a geological fault. Due to over reliance of Pakistan on dams for electricity generation,some environmental impacts of dams such as submergence of usable/ecological land and their negative impact on Pakistan's mangrove forests due to loss of river silt load, as well as increased risk of severe floods have become evident.
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Over 140 million Pakistanis either have no access to the power grid or suffer over 12 hours of loadshedding daily.
Can the government tackle the energy crisis? Doing so in the long run may be possible, but in the immediate term, consumers must begin using more energy-efficient products in order to mitigate the issue, reveals the report "Energy Conservation: Avoid Wastages, Prevent Shortages" by Research and Advocacy for the Advancement of Allied Reforms (Raftaar).
The average shortfall in the power sector is , and nearly per day (BCFD) in the natural gas sector.
The shortfall in the power sector can rise to around or 32pc of total demand for electricity.
Chronic power shortage, in the form of load-shedding and power outages, costed the Pakistan economy (7pc of GDP) last year.
Pakistanis either have no access to the power grid or suffer over 12 hours of load-shedding daily. Pakistanis who do not have access to the grid are often poorer than those on the grid. Meanwhile, household electricity consumption has grown at an average annual rate of yearly.
households are impacted with unemployment as businesses have been forced to shut down due to energy shortages.
In the last five years, Pakistan has taken a hit of per annum from system losses in the grid due to inefficient transmission and distribution.
Investment in the power sector has fallen to of the GDP in the last 10 years, from a high of during the 1980s and 1990s.
is the approximate expenditure by Pakistani households on UPS and battery chargers alone. About of Pakistani households have some form of UPS as a backup for selected appliances during power cuts and shortages. Backup power sources are a stopgap solution, both wasteful and inefficient.
How can Pakistan cope with chronic power shortage?
Although the government is attempting to add capacity to the grid in order to remedy the persistent power shortage, these measures will take time to come into effect.
A more immediate solution to the problem is the conservation and efficient use of energy, as about 67pc of domestic energy consumption stems from inefficient appliances such as lights and fans.
Another alternative is to shift to renewable forms of energy, such as wind and solar power.
There is enough potential from wind generation to supply all of Pakistan's electricity needs. Half this potential exists in one contiguous belt of Sindh coastline.
There are around 1.2m irrigation pumps installed in Pakistan, with about 90pc of these pumps using diesel directly or indirectly.
The use of solar irrigation pumps for agricultural purposes instead of diesel-powered or tractor driven pumps could mean a 27pc saving in consumption of diesel fuel for irrigation pumping.
The China Pakistan Economic Corridor is another way Pakistan could turn towards cleaner forms of energy, as China is a world leader in total wind and solar installed renewable energy, at about 140,000MW.
Punjab must lead the way in this initiative, as the province is home to the largest population in Pakistan and consumes the most electricity. About 90pc of all tubewells are also in Punjab.
The Raftaar report says the greatest responsibility and opportunity lies with the province to improve energy efficiency and conservation in agriculture, as well as in households and businesses.
Raftaar is an economic reform platform whose knowledge partners include a coalition with the CDRP (Consortium for Development Policy Research), which is itself a consortium of Pakistan’s top economists and economic think tanks (including the International Growth Centre, Institute of Development and Economic Alternatives and Center for Economic Research in Pakistan).