Sources close to Global Village Space have shared that Sundar Industrial Estate is hopeful to receive a new electricity grid before the end of this year. This fresh electric grid is expected to provide them with 350 MW to completely meet energy demands of the industrial estate. The current electricity source gives a maximum output of 124 MW, which is substantially substandard and not enough to power the industries housed in the estate.
Sundar Industrial Estate (SIE) is the brainchild of Punjab Industrial Estate Development & Management Company (PIEDMC). PIEDMC is an autonomous, not-profit entity owned by the Government of Punjab, but run by a Board of Directors (BOD) comprising of private sector industrialists and ex-officio members.
In in a discussion with Dr. Moeed Pirzada in his talk show, called ‘Hard Talk’, aired on 92 news, on Wednesday 22nd January, Jahangir Khan Tareen explained how PIEDMC is the first of Public Private Partnerships in the country and a milestone project under his supervision as an advisor to Chief Minister of Punjab in 2002 and 2003.
This public-private entity was formed in 2003, with the vision to promote industrialization in the province of Punjab. And this vision was brought to life through the construction of several industrial estates throughout Punjab that would eventually attract local and foreign investors. According to PIEDMC, “the objective was to develop an industrial estate where issues of prospective industrialists are handled and problems solved through ‘One Window’ operation”.
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Inaugurated in 2007, Sundar Industrial Estate expands over a large area of 1750 acres of land, out of which 728 acres have been allotted to industrial plots. 100% of these plots have been sold out and are constantly in the process of allocation and production. SIE houses over 400 factories in production and is proudly contributing to the economy by generating employment for over 70 to 80 thousand workmen.
These 400 factories diversely belong to the industries of auto parts, textiles, pharmaceuticals, garments, food products, steel fabrication and many more. The economic zone is strategically located along the Rohi Nala Bypass, which is an offshoot of Raiwand Road in Lahore.
With a fully functioning administrative and site office, water distribution network with underground and overhead reservoirs, pumping station and generator house, along with a properly operational underground sewerage network, Sundar Industrial Estate is close to completion of all its promised utilities as the laying of electrical distribution network and sub-stations is in progress.
Since the beginning, 24/7 electricity was promised to the industrial estate. However, due to low capacity and priority considerations, the electric supply to Sundar Industrial Estate remained inadequate. In 2016, to curb some of the gap between demand and supply, SIE management installed a state-of-the-art solar panel system to power its head office at Gate #2. This project was undertaken with the sponsorship from Premier Energy, a UK-based company that provides LED and Solar Power solutions within Pakistan. The solar panel system could generate up to 4.5 KV of power that helps ease of the electrical load at the Board’s office and directly decreases its electricity costs substantially.
The new management of PIEDMC took over in October 2019 and took on a hands-on approach to handle the ongoing issue electricity supply. Technical surveys and load management conditions were undertaken and electricity was provided to all pending connections. Communications began with National Transmission & Despatch Company (NTDC) – a Pakistani government-owned power transmission company – with whom a high powered 220Kva, 350 MW Grid station was requested to permanently solve the electric supply problem.
For this purpose, a 10-acre land area was allocated and a resultant MOU was signed with NTDC and LESCO, for the construction of a 220 Kva Grid station and laying of transmission lines, respectively. It is anticipated that the Grid station will become functional by the end of 2020 and an excess capacity of 120 Mw would be available for new units as they are setup up. This would encourage more local and foreign industrialists to rely on PIEDMC and take advantage of their state-of-the-art economic zones.