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Energy Sector Projects of CPEC

The current capacity of Pakistan’s energy generation is 24,830 MW. CPEC has majorly focused on enhancing the energy generation capacity of Pakistan with an approximate investment of $33 billion. 10,400 MW of electricity is estimated to be generated by March 2018 under CPEC Early Harvest Projects.

Private Independent Power producers will be constructing the energy projects under CPEC, the Exim Bank of china is going to be financing these projects at 5-6% interest rates whereas government of Pakistan will have to purchase electricity from those firms at negotiated rates.


Pakistan has announced in March 2018 that hydro power projects will be given priority after the completion of under construction projects. The aim is to produce 25% of its energy through alternative energy by year 2030.

China’s company Zonergy will construct the world’s largest solar power plant which is made on 6500 acre by the name of Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park near Bahawalpur which will enable a capacity of 1000MW. The first phase has been done by Xinjiang SunOasis generating a capacity of 100 MW. Zonergy will generate the remaining 900MW as part of CPEC.

A Turkish company Zorlu Enerji built Jhimpir Wind Power Plant which is already selling 56.4 MW to the government. Additional 250 MW would be produced by Pak-China group United Energy at a cost of $659 million. HydroChina is constructing Dawood Wind Power Plant costing $115 million giving capacity of 50MW.

Suki Kinari Hydropower Project in Kaghan Valley is constructed by SK Hydro Consortium, costing $1.8 billion and producing 870MW financed by Exim Bank of China.

China’s Silk Road Fund is financing Karot Dam costing $1.6 billion and producing a capacity of 720MW.

The $2.4 billion, 1,100 MW Kohala Hydropower Project  is going to be constructed by Three Gorges Corporation predates the announcement of CPEC, it will be financed through CPEC funds

Coal Energy Projects under CPEC

Most of the projects despite other renewable energy projects are going to be based on Coal Plants, estimated cost being $5.8 billion and to be completed under Early Harvest Projects of CPEC till 2019.

Transmission line would be laid between Matiari and Lahore it would be of 660 KV, the electricity would be from a coal power plant at Thar. It will have the capacity of 2000MW with 10% overload capacity for duration of 2 hours.


A $970 million project of coal power plan to be built near Karachi with a capacity of 660MW. The project would be done by China Power Investment Corporation and Hub Power Company. It will be part of a $2 billion project which will produce 1320MW by coal.

A coal power plant is also developed in Gwadar with a capacity of 330 MW and would be financed with 0% interest. It also include a 132 KV(AIS) Grid Station along with associated D/C Transmission line at Down Town, Gwadar along with other 132 KV Sub Stations at Deep Sea Port Gwadar.


In Punjab, Sahiwal Coal Power Project is in working condition since July 2017. It is a $1.8 billion worth project located in central Punjab with a capacity of 1320MW.it was constructed as a joint venture by Huaneng Shandong and Shandong Ruyi, who will jointly own and operate the plant. Pakistan will be buying electricity from these two at a tariff of 8.36 US cents/kWh.

Coal based power plant to be built in Pind Daddan Khan with a capacity of 300MW costing $589 million by China Machinery Engineering Corporation in Punjab’s Salt Range. Pakistan’s NEPRA is questioned for settling on a high tariff of 11.57 US cents/kWH and Chinese supports the tariff as the transportation cost of coal is high for this power plant.


Shanghai Electric will construct Thar-I project with a capacity of 1320MW in Thar coalfields, whereas Thar-II would be developed by a different group. This power plant would be fueled by local coal NEPRA has agreed to purchase the produced electricity from Thar-I and Thar-II at a tariff of 8.50 US cents/kWh for the first 330 MW of electricity, 8.33 US cents/kWh for the next 660 MW, and 7.99 US cents/kWh for the next 1,099 MW as they develop.

Pakistan based Engro Corporation will be constructing two more power plants of 330MW capacity each as part of Thar-II this will be increasing capacity over the period of 10 years. The transmission line from Matiari to Lahore is also constructed under CPEC.

Pakistan Port Qasim Power Project which is near Port Qasim will have a capacity of 1320MW costing $2.8 billion. It would be a joint venture between Al-Mirqab Capital from Qatar, and China‘s Power Construction Corporation. NEPRA and SinoHydro agreed to set the tariff for electricity purchased from them at 8.12 US cents/kWh.

Liquefied Natural Gas

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects are also of significant importance in the projects of CPEC. The Chinese government has announced building 711km pipeline from Gwadar to Nawabshah which will cost $2.5billion as an important part of CPEC. This pipeline will be a chunk of the Iran-Pakistan 2775km long LNG pipeline. Iran has already constructed a 900 kilometre long portion on its side of the border.

The portion which is on the land of Pakistan will be built by state-owned China Petroleum Pipeline Bureau. It will have the capacity to transport 1×109 cubic feet (2.8×107 m3) of liquified natural gas on daily basis. An additional 500×106 cubic feet (1.4×107 m3) capacity when off-shore LNG terminal is complete.

This project will give the gas exporters an easy access to Pakistani market and also provide China a route for its exports. Balloki Power Plant is under construction by Harbin Electric Company (Chinese) near Kasur financed by EXIM bank of China. Bhikhi Power Plant with a capacity of 1180 MWis expected to be Pakistan’s most efficient power plants, its efficiency is estimated to provide power to almost 6million homes.

“Early Harvest” Energy Projects

As part of the “Early Harvest” CPEC projects, it is anticipated to increase the electricity generation capacity by 10,000 megawatts to Pakistan’s electricity grid by the end of 2018 and 2020 by the completion of energy projects of CPEC.

The 1,223 MW Balloki Power Plantand Bhakki powerplant of 1,180 MWhave been completed in 2018, along with 969MW Neelum Jhelum Hydropower plant and 1,410 MW Tarbella IV Ectension Project will give additional 10,000 MW with all CPEC and non CPEC projects. In addition to this further 1,000 MW electricity will be imported from Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan as a result of CASA-1000 project.

Early Harvest Projects List

“Early Harvest” Energy ProjectCapacityLocation
Pakistan Port Qasim Power Project.1,320 MW (2 x 660 MW plants)Sindh
Thar-l Project1,320 MW (4 x 330 MW plants)Sindh
Thar-ll Project and coal mine1,320 MW (2 x 660 MW plants)Sindh
Sahiwal Coal Power Project1,320 MW (2 x 660 MW plants)Punjab
Rahimyar Khan coal power project1,320 MW (2 x 660 MW plants)Punjab
Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park1,000 MWPunjab
Suki Kinari Hydropower Project870 MW (expected completion in 2020)Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Karot Hydropower Project720 MW (expected completion in 2020)Punjab
China Power Hub Generation Company2X660 MWBalochistan
Thar Engro Coal Power Project660 MW (2 x 330 MW plants)Sindh
Gwadar coal power project300 MWBalochistan
UEP Windfarm100 MWSindh
Dawood wind power project50 MWSindh
Sachal Windfarm50 MWSindh
Sunnec Windfarm50 MWSindh
Matiari to Faisalabad transmission line660 kilovoltSindh and Punjab
Matiari to Lahore Transmission Line660 kilovoltSindh and Punjab