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IMF dissatisfies over performance of energy sector, presents new conditions

ISLAMABAD (Eshfak Mughal):- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has demand to the govt to introduce law for the bureaucrats of grade 17 and above to mandatory declare their assets for revival the loan program.

The Technical talks between Pakistan and IMF team underway in Islamabad under the 9th Review Meeting of Extended Fund Facility singed in 2019.

During the technical talks, the IMF negotiation team has demanded to the government Pakistan that the assets of offline of grade 17 and above and their families should be declared, sources in the Ministry of Finance told Voice of Pakistan on Thursday.

According to sources, guidelines will be issued for access to assets of law enforcement agencies, State Bank, Establishment Division and FBR will work together.

While meeting with the officials of Ministry of Energy, the IMF expressed dissatisfaction in the performance of Electricity Distribution Companies and expressed serious concerns over the failure to collect 100 percent of bills.

The IMF demanded the government to ensure recovery and discontinue subsidy in electricity tariff tariff subsidy in industrial sector.

It is pertinent to mention here that Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had announced a subsidy package worth Rs.110 for export oriented sector on Oct 2022 which was violation of IMF condition.

IMF says that elimination of circulation debt is not possible without 100% bill collection and improving the performance of government companies.

According to the data, the bill recovery of electricity has been reduced by 7 percent to 90 percent to 97 percent during the fiscal year 2021-22 as compared to 2020-21. The worse situation of the recovery is of Quetta Electric Supply Company where bill recovery is only 35 percent during the last fiscal year.

The performance of power sector on line losses and power theft is also a matter of concerns and not defend-able. The government data shows that that the the line losses including technical losses and theft reached 17.13 percent as against the target of 13.41 percent during the last fiscal year.

The data shows that power sector has faced loss of Rs.520 billion due to technical line losses and electricity thefts during the last fiscal year. The power department put burden of this line losses to general public who pays regular bills.

The report shows that the Peshawar Electric Supply Company was appeared with worse performance on line losses and power theft followed by Sukhar Electric Supply Company, Haiderabad Electric Supply Company and Quetta Electric Supply Company. The line losses were recorded of PESCO at 37 percent against the target of 20.73 percent, SEPCO stands at 35.62 percent, HESCO stands at 32.88 percent and QESCO with 28.97 percent during the last fiscal year.

Sources say that the IMF is of the opinion that it is not possible to eliminate the revolving debt without improving the performance of power distribution companies, without 100 percent bill collection, the circular debt of the power sector cannot be eliminated.

According to the sources, the IMF has called the performance of all the distribution companies except 3 as unsatisfactory and has demanded the government of Pakistan to ensure the collection of electricity bills by the discos.

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