‘Privatisation of DISCOs to help improve the provision of services’

Privatisation Commission (PC) Board under the leadership of the federal minister on Wednesday has finalized recommendations regarding the private sector’s participation in the management of DISCOS, which would be presented in the Cabinet Committee on Privatization (CCOP).

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The Privatisation Commission (PC) on Wednesday has finalized proposals for the participation of the private sector in the management of 10 power distribution companies (Discos) and the Cabinet Committee on Privatisation (CCoP) will take up the issue in its next meeting.

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As per a statement released in this regard, the development came during the third meeting of the PC Board chaired by Federal Minister for Privatisation, Mohammed Mian Soomro, on Wednesday. Power Adviser Tabish Gohar also attended the meeting.

The board was briefed about the plans and options for the private sector’s participation in the DISCOs’ management considering the decisions of the CCoP meeting held on March 18 and about the latest progress made in the transactions of different entities.

The management contracts would improve the service delivery and thus, serve the larger interest of electricity consumers in Pakistan.

The PC had sought information from the power division of the ministry of energy concerning the financial, technical, and commercial status of Discos in addition to the audited financial statements, profit and loss accounts, tariff determinations by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra).

The commission sought further information on legal issues particularly any litigation and court cases that may hamper the privatisation process.

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The Federal Minister said the purpose of the private sector’s participation is to resolve c and improve the services of power distribution companies by making them competitive.

The list of 10 DISCOs prepared by the working group includes electricity supply companies of Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Hyderabad, Islamabad, Lahore, Multan, Peshawar, Quetta, Sukkur, and tribal areas.

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The proposed recommended plan for the privatisation of DISCO will be placed before the upcoming meeting of CCoP for consideration and further action. The committee also allowed the hiring of a transaction adviser as permissible under the rules. The Board was also briefed about the latest progress made in the transactions of different entities.