Korea to spend $2b on two hydropower projects

Founder Editor Tazeen Akhtar..

LAHORE – December 25, 2012- Two memorandum of understanding were signed on Monday among the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, the Wapda and Korean firms to develop two hydropower projects in public-private partnership mode with cumulative power generation capacity of 1,161 mega watt.

A statement said that the milestone had been achieved as a result of recent visit of President Asif Ali Zardari to Korea.

According to details, first MoU was signed with Korea Midland Power Company (KOMIPO) for the 496 MW-Lower Spat Gah Hydropower Project, while the second with K-Water/Daewoo consortium for the 665 MW-Lower Palas Valley Hydropower Project.

The Wapda Chairman Raghib Shah, KPK Shydo Managing Director Bahadur Shah, KOMIPO Chairman Choi Rak and K-Water representative in Pakistan No Hyuk Park signed the MoU on behalf of their organisations. Korea Ambassador to Pakistan Choong Joo Choi was also present on the occasion.

Addressing the ceremony, the ambassador termed signing of the MoU a milestone to bring the two countries closer in the vital sector of hydropower. He appreciated Wapda Chairman’s efforts for this achievement.

The Wapda Chairman said that the Korean firms, selected through international competitive biddings, will together bring in with them an investment of more than $2 billion for construction of Lower Spat Gah and Lower Palas Valley hydropower projects. This investment shows the confidence, the international financial institutions have in Wapda for implementation of the projects in water and hydropower sectors, he added.

Shah further said that the two projects will contribute more than 4.5 billion units of electricity to the National grid annually. He said that the two projects were a part of the strategy for optimum utilisation of water resources to help overcome electricity shortage and stabilise power tariff for the consumers. Dilating upon the efforts for developing water resources, he added that Wapda was implementing more than 20 projects to generate about 20,000 MW of electricity and store 12 million acre feet of water.

Lower Spat Gah Hydropower Project is located on left bank tributary of River Indus with its confluence some eight kilometres downstream of Dasu town in district Kohistan of KPK province, while Lower Palas Valley Hydropower Project is also located on another left bank tributary of River Indus with its confluence some 12 kilometres upstream of Patan town of the same district.