By Shafqat Munir
ISLAMABAD, July 09, 2010: Pakistan and France Friday singed a financial agreement of 20 million Euros for energy efficiency, lowering energy bills of domestic and public consumers and for reducing at least one million tonnes of CO2 per year.
Federal Secretary Economic Affairs Division (EAD), Sibtain Fazal Halim, and French Daniel Jouanneau, and Country Director of the French Development Agency (AFD) Yves Terracol, signed the financing agreement from their respective sides.
This financial facility will be a part of the first tranche of Energy Efficiency Investment Programme, co-sponsored by French Development Agency (AFD) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The total financing under this facility is U.S. $ 1.1 billion. The first tranche aims at promoting energy efficiency in residential lighting and consists of the free distribution of 30 million compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) to the Pakistani households.
“The expected fall in energy consumption will not only lower the energy bills of both households and public consumers, but will also lead to a reduction in green house gas emissions of 1 million tonnes of CO2 per year, allowing the country to benefit from 21.2 million euros worth of carbon credits over an eight-year period,” said a French embassy statement.
The financing is expected to help address the current energy crisis in Pakistan by reducing peak demand, give impetus to the promotion of energy efficiency by providing sufficient financing to permit a viable transformation of the lighting market and place energy efficiency at the heart of public and private decision mechanisms.
“The project is expected to lead to a 1,100 MW reduction in peak demand, thus saving Pakistan €1,315 million in investment that would have been necessary to meet the demand. This reduction in peak demand should lead to an annual reduction of electricity consumption of approximately 2,310 GWh,” added the statement.
The free CFL will be of an excellent quality, with a lifespan of 10,000 hours, and with specific markings in the bulbs, it would be ensured that they are not sold in the market, said the statement. The overall cost of the project is estimated at €61 million, of which €20 million is financed by AFD.
The Secretary EAD and AFD Country Director also signed another agreement ‘Financing Framework Agreement (FFA)’ covering the whole Programme. This Programme has been launched by the Government to help tackle the present energy crisis and prevent future crisis. It has six tranches: promotion of low-energy light bulbs to the population, yield increase productivity of existing thermal power plants, energy efficiency improvement in public buildings and lighting, energy efficiency promotion in the industrial sector, refurbishment of gas transmission and distribution network and replacement of inefficient domestic appliances
As a member of the group of Friends of Democratic Pakistan, France is committed to the welfare of the Pakistani population and is committed to implementing projects providing sustainable development for the Pakistani people. France pledged 300 million euros during the Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FODP) summit in Tokyo last year.
The exceptional potential of Pakistan in terms of hydropower encourages both WAPDA and AFD to jointly engage in other projects in the near future. The rehabilitation of the Jabban power plant in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province has already been approved and will be followed by other projects aiming at addressing Pakistan’s energy crisis.