Per capita electricity consumption in the country 10 times lower than world average
LAHORE: The ongoing energy crisis in Pakistan, coupled with various tariff slabs, has encouraged many overseas companies to enter the lucrative yet niche market of solar power solutions.
Though solar power technology is not new, as time passes more advanced technological companies are looking to penetrate energy-starved markets in the Asian region.
SkyElectric, a Florida-based company, believes that the population of this region is going to increase manifold in coming years and so would the demand for electricity.
“The world is expected to have an additional 2 billion people in the next 20 years and along with Pakistan, other regional countries will have a major increase in population, which are still struggling to meet their demand,” said Ashar Aziz, Chief Executive Officer of SkyElectric, while talking to a group of journalists on Tuesday. He said per capita income was still low in Pakistan, which had a direct impact on 48% of domestic power consumers as they used less electricity.
“Per capita electricity consumption in the modern world ranges between 4,000 and 5,000 units per annum, whereas in Pakistan it is around 450 units,” he said.
“With rising demand in Pakistan, one can guess what could be the demand in coming years, especially when migration to urban centres is on the rise,” Aziz said.
He said it was the right time to move towards reliable hybrid solar power solution, which was a cheap source of energy, having negligible recurring cost. It could also become a source of income by selling surplus power to the national grid by connecting with the network of distribution companies through smart meters. “One million houses with efficient solar power solutions in Pakistan can reduce 20-30% load from the national power grid, which can be provided to industries and commercial users.”
He suggested that the government should further reduce import duties and taxes on solar power panels and batteries, which would greatly promote use of solar power solutions at the domestic level, resulting in uninterrupted power supply to these consumers.
Electric utilities should make it easier to export excess solar energy back to the main grid by simplifying the process of acquiring net-metering licences, he added. He said his company’s systems were advanced, combining solar energy with lithium-ion battery technology, energy intelligence and 24/7 remote monitoring and fault correction through a network operation centre.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 13th, 2017.