Pakistan, India agree to boost cooperation in power, gas sectors

Jun 12, 2013 12:00 AM

Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said that efforts will be made to control loadshedding and practical measures will be taken to seek cooperation of India for this purpose.

He welcomed the interest shown by India to cooperate with Pakistan in the energy sector, saying that Pakistan and India could move ahead by promoting trade and economic relations which would be beneficial to the peoples of both countries.

Shahbaz stated this while talking to an Indian delegation of power and gas sector which, led by Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gopal Baglay, called on him at Model Town on Tuesday. Both the countries agreed to enhance cooperation in gas and power sectors.

He said Pakistan and India were neighbouring countries and by acting upon the principles of peaceful co-existence, they would have to move forward on the road to progress and prosperity. He said cooperation in economic sector was the key to development of the two countries, adding that trade cooperation between Pakistan and India was essential for peace, progress and prosperity in the region. He said both the countries could benefit from each other's trade, investment, industries, education, health and other sectors.

The chief minister said that the goal of progress and development of India and Pakistan could not be achieved without giving a chance to peace. He said the economic, industrial, agriculture and other sectors had been badly affected by the energy crisis in Pakistan besides routine life had also been disturbed.

Shahbaz said the PML-N government would take all necessary measures to overcome the energy crisis and the challenge would be turned into opportunities. He thanked the Indian delegation for visiting Pakistan, saying it was good that an Indian delegation of energy sector was in Lahore and soon a delegation of Pakistani experts in energy sector would visit India for further progress for cooperation between in energy sector.

The CM said that the proposals put forward in the meeting would be presented by him to the prime minister, adding that India and Pakistan would have to take practicable measures for the promotion of bilateral trade. He said a number of useful proposals had been put forth in the meeting and their implementation can help promote cooperation between Pakistan and India in energy sector.

The Indian delegation gave a briefing to the CM on details of the proposed project of laying a power transmission line from Amritsar to Lahore and a gas pipeline from Jalandhar to Jallo. Pakistani experts also submitted their proposals on the proposed project.

Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gopal Baglay said that there had been a peaceful transition of power in Pakistan in a democratic manner. He said the Indian government had also expressed good wishes for the PML-N government. He expressed the hope that bilateral relations between India and Pakistan will improve under the new government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Punjab Minister for Energy Sher Ali Khan, chief secretary, former caretaker Federal Minister for Water & Power Dr Musadaq Malik, Finance secretary, adviser on Power Planning NTDC, Joint Secretary Indian Ministry of Electricity Mrs. Rita Acharya, Joint Secretary Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas PK Singh, Member of Central Electricity Authority India Mr Ravinder, Secretary Power and Energy of Indian Punjab Anirudh Tiwari, representatives of GAIL, V.N Datt, P.K Paul, R.K. Mathur, Mukesh Khanna of Power Grid Corporation of India Limited, Y.K Sehgal and other experts were present.

APP adds: Meanwhile, Pakistan and India on Tuesday discussed the proposals for electricity trade to import and high-voltage direct current (HVDC) link establishment to transfer 500 mega watts.

The lines will emanate from grid station in India to grid station in Pakistan, said a press release issued here.For the purpose, a meeting between the two countries was held here under the chairmanship of Federal Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Muhammad Asif.

The Indian side consisting of a five-member group of experts on trade of electricity was headed by Joint Secretary (Transmission), Ministry of Power, India. Later, discussions were held between the expert groups of the two countries. A detailed discussion of the Indian group with National Transmission And Despatch Company Limited (NTDCL) was also held in Lahore the other day.

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