September 13, 2023
Finance Pakistan

Govt Set To Sell LNG Plants To Qatar

The government has quietly delisted two power plants, which over four years ago, had been put on an active list for privatisation to raise an estimated $1.5 billion, aimed at selling these state assets to Qatar in a direct deal to avoid a looming sovereign default.

The development came two days after the government constituted a new cabinet committee aimed at selling the state assets on a fast-track basis. The 2460 megawatts (MW) capacity LNG-fired power plants will now be handed over to this committee to find a suitable foreign nation buyer.

Sources told The Express Tribune that a meeting of the Privatisation Commission Board (PCB) was called on Thursday to remove the plants from the privatisation programme. The Minister for Privatisation, Abid Hussain Bhayo, who is also the chairman of the board, was not even present in the city and virtually chaired the meeting.

Usually, the PCB issues a press statement after a board meeting – this time, however, no statement was issued, apparently to keep the matter confidential.

Neither the privatisation minister nor the secretary of privatisation responded to requests for comments. The sources said that the board has recommended the delisting of the power plants from the privatisation list to the Cabinet Committee on Privatisation (CCOP).

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