The Prime Minister of Pakistan, Shehbaz Sharif, has issued an invitation to Chinese companies to invest in the country’s renewable energy sector – with a particular focus on solar power.
This comes from a statement released after the Prime Minister met with a delegation from the Chinese state-owned company NORINCO. The delegation was led by the company’s vice-president, Wang Xiaobing, and its CEO for Pakistan, Li Chen.
The Prime Minister also thanked the company for its role in the Lahore Orange Line Metro Train project, which he said is making commuting easier for hundreds of thousands of people in Lahore every day.
He recalled that this was the first time that open bidding took place in a Government to Government (G2G) project, and that negotiations with the lowest bidder led to a saving of $600 million, which he called a milestone in the development history of Pakistan.
The NORINCO delegation expressed interest in investing in a variety of renewable energy projects in Pakistan, particularly the wind corridor in Thatta for which a 100 MW wind power project has been proposed.
Pakistan’s latest power generation mix shows that non-renewable energy sources make up more than 70% of power generation in the month of May.
The majority of the country’s power comes from renewable energy sector, with hydroelectric power contributing the most at 24%. Wind power accounts for 5% of the country’s energy needs, while solar power only contributed 1% last month, with a generation of only 90kWh.
NORINCO also highlighted fibre optic along railway lines, copper and iron ore mining at proven reserves, and infrastructure development in big cities as key investment opportunities.
The Prime Minister said that Pakistan is open to investment and will facilitate the process. He stated that deepening China-Pakistan economic cooperation is critical to Pakistan’s socio-economic uplift, while highlighting the significance of CPEC as transformational project for the mutual benefit and development of both the friendly countries.
Meanwhile, Member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and Director of the Central Commission on Foreign Affairs of the CPC Yang Jiechi arrived on a two-day visit to Pakistan on Wednesday.