Agreements of IPPs under CPEC cannot be renegotiated under CPEC, Pak government tells Senate Committee

Islamabad [Pakistan]: The Pakistani government told the Senate Standing Committee on Power that the agreement of the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) cannot be renegotiated, just like other IPPs, as the Chinese companies could take the matter for international arbitration, local media reported.
The Senate Standing Committee on Power that met under Senator Saifullah Abro, was told by the officials of the Power division that they cannot brief the committee openly regarding the tariff matters of the power plants installed by Chinese IPPs under CPEC. However it was told that the power division is ready to brief the in camera meeting of the committee on the issue, The Nation reported on Friday. Some Chinese companies don’t support the idea of making the details of agreements on CPEC IPPs public, Additional Secretary Power Division Waseem Mukhtar told the committee.
He said that the CPEC IPPs were installed under the 2013-14 Power Policy and the government of Pakistan is the guarantor to the agreements. The additional secretary further said that they cannot open the tariff matters of the CPEC IPPs, just like other IPPs, as it could land the country in international arbitration, The Nation reported.
Meanwhile, Senator Saifullah Abro stated that the people of the areas around the Nuclear power plants should be provided royalty on the pattern of Oil & Gas producing areas. He said that NEPRA protects the consumers and there should be protection of the people living the nuclear power plants areas. However, Chairman NEPRA said that he is not an expert of nuclear technology and can update the committee after discussing it with the Atomic Energy Commission, the Pakistani Publication reported.
The Chairman of the committee said that it is strange that the private power plants are working for 30 years without any fault but the government-owned plant develop an enormous fault within 7 years, The Nation reported.
CPEC is a part of China’s most ambitious project ‘Belt and Road Initiative’, aimed at renewing the country’s historic trade routes in the coastal countries of south-east Asia.
In 2015, China announced the ‘China Pakistan Economic Corridor’ (CPEC) project which is worth USD 46 billion.
With CPEC, Beijing aims to expand its influence in Pakistan and across Central and South Asia in order to counter the influence of the United States.
The CPEC would link Pakistan’s southern Gwadar port (626 kilometers west of Karachi) in Balochistan on the Arabian Sea to China’s western Xinjiang region. It also includes plans to create road, rail, and oil pipeline links to improve connectivity between China and the Middle East.

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