PPI Original Text (PPI-OT) – President Business Forum of Punjab suggests recovery drive against government departments to save power sector

Lahore, May 22, 2012 (PPI-OT): President Business Forum of Punjab (BFP) Ibrahim Qureshi has said that the government should launch a recovery drive from different departments in order to save the power generation companies from liquidity crunch, as the issue of circular debt would not be resolved even after the issuance of Rs82 billion TFCs.

The government should disconnect electricity to the departments not paying electricity bills since years, he said, adding: Otherwise the energy crisis would remain unresolved despite high-level meeting chaired by both President Asif Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani time and again.

President BFP has deplored that the government departments/autonomous entities and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas are defaulting month after month on clearing the electricity bills to the distribution companies.

Ibrahim said the periodic efforts to overcome circular debt problem through the issuance of Term Finance Certificates (TFCs) besides release of meager amounts from the Finance Ministry to ensure sustainable fuel supply to power generation companies are proved futile exercises. All these efforts have an impact for a very limited time period only, he added.

He said the government cannot put the energy crisis on the backburner as it is increasingly becoming politically untenable for it amidst violent street protests throughout the country.

President BFP said the energy crisis has crippled the industrial growth altogether, particularly the industry in smaller cities was hit hard due to both announced and unannounced load shedding. He said a stalemate in industrial output was resulting into bad law and order situation and the crime rate in major cities of the country has increased manifold.

He has expressed the hope that the government would soon launch a recovery drive against government departments defaulting on electricity bills and bring the power sector out of the clutches of circular debt.

For more information, contact:
Muhammad Ibrahim Qureshi
Central President
Business Forum of Punjab
Cell: +92 300 8458182
Phone: +92 42 35842471-72
Fax: +92 92 42 35842473
E-mail: iq@bfp.com.pk