KARACHI: Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) has approved K-Electric’s application for a license to construct and operate a gas pipeline, that will supply Re-gasified Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG) for the upcoming RLNG-based 900 MW BQPS-III power plant and supplementing fuel requirement of the power plants located at its Bin Qasim Power Complex.
This is a very positive development for KE as the grant of the license by OGRA is a first ever license obtained by KE in the oil & gas sector and is a key step in ensuring that the upcoming BQPS III power plant receives the right amount of gas, at the right pressure. This milestone will go a long way in helping bridge the supply-demand gap in Karachi in the years to come.
In the notification issued on January 6, 2021, OGRA grants a License to K-Electric Limited to undertake regulated activity related to construction and operation of 14 inch diameter x 2.4 kilometer Natural Gas Pipeline along with ancillary/connected facilities for purpose of transmission of Natural Gas/RLNG from Tie-in Point, SSGC Custody Transfer Station located at Bin Qasim to KE Bin Qasim Power Complex”
K-Electric had submitted an application for the same on 18 May 2020, so as to ensure the pipeline would be built in time for the commissioning of the first unit of BQPS-III. It is pertinent to note that in the interest of expediting the process, the power utility has agreed to undertake the construction of the pipeline from the nearest SSGC Custody Transfer Station, on a self-finance basis. The EPC contractor and the Owner Engineer for this pipeline project are already on-board, the detail design of is already completed and the pipeline material has already been procured. Now, with the issuance of License by OGRA, K-Electric has immediately started construction of pipeline for its timely availability for commissioning of 900 MW power plant.
The addition of the 900 MW RLNG Power Plant along with proposed decommissioning of older and less efficient units will ultimately increase the power utility’s generation capacity and lead to improved service delivery. In the interest of the citizens of Karachi, and ensuring that they face minimal difficulties in the upcoming summer season, work on the BQPS-III power plant is proceeding on a fast-track basis. Gas turbines and steam generators have arrived and are waiting to be installed so that the first unit of 450 MW can be brought online by summer of 2021, and the second unit by end of 2021.
While the approval of the 900 MW plant is a vital element towards meeting Karachi’s growing power demands, other commitments also need to be fulfilled in a timely manner for this reality to be realized. Heads of Agreement with Pakistan LNG Limited (PLL) for supply of 150mmcfd of gas for BQPS-III has already been signed, subsequent to which negotiations on the Gas Sale Agreement (GSA) have reached to the advance stage and any potential hurdles need to be resolved as per past commitments by the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE).
The 900 MW RLNG based plant and its timely completion is just one step towards keeping Karachi energized. Even with the commissioning of this plant, NTDC needs to expedite work on the upgrade of the interconnection facilities at the KDA Grid so that the power utility can evacuate the promised additional 450 MW from the National Grid before summer 2021. K-Electric is confident that all concerned stakeholders will continue to lend support in these so that KE achieves its vision of bringing Karachi to a power surplus situation by the year 2022.