- Shahbaz thanks Chinese leadership, investors for spending on energy projects
Moving a step closer to end load shedding in Pakistan, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Friday has inaugurated the construction work of main power building of 1,320 megawatt coal power plant in Sahiwal.
The inauguration ceremony was attended by the Ruyi Group Chairman Qiu Yafu, Hauneng Shandong power company President Wang Wenzong, Chinese Consul General Yu Boren, Minister of State for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali, Pakistan Today Editor and veteran journalist Arif Nizami, Chinese investors, diplomats, provincial ministers, assembly members, senior officials and administrative officers.
The attendees prayed for the solidarity, stability and progress and prosperity of the country.
Addressing the ceremony, Shahbaz said that the government has taken a giant leap towards its target of ending load shedding by 2018.
He said that the plants, located in Qadirabad, Sahiwal, will is generate 1,320 megawatts electricity through coal, adding that these power plants are the first and the biggest project of power generation from coal in Pakistan.
Lauding Chinese government and investors, he said that investment of China in Pakistan is not merely investment but a splendid gift for Pakistan and its people, and Pakistanis cannot forget this great favour of brotherly neighbour.
He said that work had been started expeditiously on 1,320 megawatt project in Sahiwal two and half months after the visit of the Chinese President XI Jingping and such speedy work has never been seen in the history of Pakistan.
He said there is no doubt that Pak-China friendship is higher than Himalayas, deeper than oceans, sweeter than honey and stronger than steel. He said that Sahiwal coal power projects are proof of this fact.
The chief minister said that when Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif came into power the issue of energy was very serious.
“The prime minister has worked very hard and consulted with China for the solution of power shortage,” he said.
“As a result, the Chinese president announced China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) package worth $ 43 billion out of which $ 33 billion is the Chinese investment in energy projects and does not include loan of even a single penny,” he added.
He said that China could have opted investing in stable countries but it chose Pakistan, depicting its love for the country and its people and confidence in the government-led by Nawaz Sharif.
“The nation is really thankful to the Chinese people,” he added.
He said that the Sahiwal coal power projects is the first drop of rain regarding CPEC which will give energy and light to the country, putting an end to darkness.
Referring to terrorism, Shahbaz said that besides shortage of energy, elimination of terrorism is another big challenge but due to bold decision of political and military leadership this menace is being controlled.
He lauded the Pakistan Army for rendering supreme sacrifices in the war against terrorism.