Thar Coal Power Project achieves commercial operations

By Staff Reporter | Gwadar Pro Jul 11, 2019

KARACHI, July 10 (Gwadar Pro) - Engro Powergen Thar Limited (EPTL) and Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) on Tuesday successfully declared the Commercial Operations Date (COD) of the first phase of the Thar coal project.

SECMC successfully unearthed the first layer of coal in June 2018 and has also completed the 60-day testing period of steady state production of on-specification coal. This culminates the first phase of the mining project. 

On the other hand, the EPTL tasked to construct 2x330MW power plants has also declared its Commercial Operations Date (COD). The EPTL plant demonstrated the proof of concept earlier by synchronizing both the power units in March and April, respectively. The company has since been involved in extensive testing of both the power units and has successfully completed all relevant inspections and commissioning of the plant thereby achieving COD.

The COD milestone of both the mining and the power projects is a significant achi­eve­ment given that the Thar dream has been an elusive reality for millions of Pakistanis for over 27 years, an EPTL statement said.

The mining project of SECMC and the EPTL power plant began approximately 3 years ago in 2016 - after the financial close of the project - led by Engro Energy and in collaboration with other commercial partners including Government of Sindh, Thal Limited, HBL, HUBCO, SPIC and China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) for the mine project, and HBL, CMEC and Liberty for the power plant. 

Developed in a record time and as per schedule and within projected costs, the Thar coal project is part of the early harvest component of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) framework.

Engro Corporation's president Ghias Khan called declaration of the COD of the Thar coal mine and power projects a monumental achievement, and said this showcases not just ability of Engro to deliver on mega projects that are good for Pakistan but also underscores success of public-private partnership models to deploy inclusive development in the country.

Ahsan Zafar Syed, chief executive officer of Engro Energy and EPTL said since the synchronisation earlier in April, they had been involved in extensive testing of the systems to ensure delivering quality and not compromising on the safety of the project.

"We are pleased that our efforts have resulted in delivering engineering excellence on our pioneering coal-fired power plant and has brought us closer to our promise of providing Pakistan with low-cost, affordable and abundant energy", he said.

SECMC CEO Syed Abul Fazal Rizvi said the first phase of the mining project was completed ahead of schedule, well within the projected costs and with a stellar safety record. 

"We are now working diligently to pursue second phase of the mining activity as per our expansion plans where we intend to economise the mine and double the production capacity to 7.6 million tonnes per annum (MPTA) for the additional 2x330MW power plant scheduled to come online in 2021", he said.

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