ISLAMABAD: The government has decided to go ahead with work on a 1,100-megawatt nuclear power plant in Karachi with Chinese assistance from the next financial year in an effort to ease energy shortages in the country.
According to sources, the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) will build the power plant named Karachi Coastal Power and costing an estimated $9.5 billion.
At present, Pakistan has two nuclear power plants – Chashma 1 and 2 – each with a capacity of 320MW and built with Chinese assistance. Work on Chashma 3 and 4 power plants is also under way.
Officials say of the total cost of Rs950 billion ($9.5 billion) for Karachi Coastal Power, the government is likely to allocate Rs7.5 billion in the budget for the next financial year, beginning July. Apart from this, it is planning to secure Rs65 billion in foreign lending to give a push to the project.
The government is also in contact with China to purchase two nuclear power plants with a combined capacity of 2,000MW, which will be utilised for setting up Karachi Nuclear Power Plant-2 (Kanupp-2) and Kanupp-3 to tackle the energy crisis.
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