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Pakistan seeks Chinese investment in energy sector

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-06-14 10:21

ISLAMABAD -- Pakistani Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, Thursday invited China North Industries Corporation, or NORINCO, which is engaged in production of solar power plants, to install solar power plants in the country, the PM office said.

Sharif was talking to a five member delegation led by Mr Wang Yitong, chairman of China North Industries Corporation, a statement from the PM office said.

The prime minister said that Pakistan has vast areas in southwestern Balochistan and central Punjab province which have sunshine round the year and there is ample land available for installation of solar power plants in Pakistan.

The chairman of NORINCO briefed the prime minister that his company is one of the 500 largest state owned enterprises in terms of assets and revenue and deals in various areas, including petroleum, mining, engineering and infrastructure projects.

Mr Wang also said that after the successful visit of the Chinese Premier Mr Li Keqiang to Pakistan, they have enjoyed special support of the Chinese government and leadership to boost business relations between the two friendly countries and undertake projects in Pakistan.

Shrif recalled that during the recent visit of the Chinese premier to Pakistan, he had very useful and fruitful talks with him and termed the visit of a delegation from NORINCO as a testimony that these relations were being further solidified, strengthened and expanded.

During the meeting, the prime minister also discussed the possibility of installation of solar energy plants in Balochistan where population is thin, scattered and at distances. This, he said, would help save laying of transmission lines which have a prohibitive cost.

Sharif also offered NORINCO to look into mining and setting up of coal power plants at sites in Thar, Balochistan and Punjab where coal is available. The work on the mining and setting up of Thermal Power plants, the prime minister said, can be carried out simultaneously so that the power can be produced as quickly as possible.

He also offered NORINCO to look into the exploration of iron ore in the country, adding that Pakistan is experiencing a severe power shortage.

The prime minister also discussed the possibilities of projects for running underground trains in Karachi, Lahore and twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad in order to facilitate commuters in these cities.

The chairman said that his company was serious and keen to take up projects in Pakistan. In this connection, the Chairman informed the prime minister that on his return to China, he would immediately dispatch his team of experts to Pakistan to initiate discussions and take these ideas forward.

The prime minister assured the Chinese delegation that his government is ready and shall extend all possible support and cooperation to NORINCO for expediting the process so that work on these projects can start in right earnest.

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