PM-Energy-Package PM Announces Rs 50B Relief Package To Benefit 25M Domestic Power Consumers

(In the realm where shadows of power play,
A beacon of hope emerges, bright as day.
Prime Minister Shehbaz, with resolve so grand,
Unveils a package to heal the land)

Scraped from the coffers of growth and dreams, Yet, for public relief, such noble schemes. No hollow claims, no promises vain, A step towards easing the people’s strain.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Tuesday announced a Rs 50 billion package to provide relief of up to seven rupees per unit to around 25 million domestic power consumers falling in the protected category for three months till September.

 Rs 50B Relief Package

"Today, an amount of Rs 50 billion has been allocated to provide a relief of Rs 4-7 per unit as a concession to our protected category consumers using up to 200 units a month for three months from July to September. This will benefit around 25 million domestic power consumers, which constitute around 94% of the total consumer base," the prime minister said at a ceremony addressing the prevailing issues related to electricity bills and reforms in the power sector.

He said the federal government had scraped the said amount from its development budget to fulfill its commitment to public relief, contrary to the hollow claims of the previous governments.

He also assured the people of further relief as the government gained fiscal space consequent to its ongoing measures of taxing the elite class, expanding the tax net, closing non-performing entities, and plugging financial leakages.

The PM highlighted that during its previous 16-month tenure, the coalition government saved the country from default by prioritizing public service over politics. Referring to the PTI-led government in the past, he recalled unfulfilled promises of eliminating corruption within 90 days and repatriating $300 billion from abroad. Instead, he noted the emergence of sugar and wheat scams and a failure to bring £190 million from the UK into the national treasury.

Prime Minister Shehbaz assured that under Muhammad Nawaz Sharif's leadership, the current government took responsibility for public service and would collectively face challenges to progress the country. He mentioned that the government was about to sign a three-year program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He also took it on board regarding the relief announced for domestic power consumers.

Additionally, the federal and Balochistan provincial governments agreed to solarize around 28,000 tube wells to save Rs 80-90 billion annually as consumers defaulted on power bill payments. The government decided to disconnect power connections and solarize all the tube wells, costing Rs 55 billion to be shared by the federal and provincial governments in a 70/30 ratio. The same model will be launched in other provinces, saving $3.5 billion on foreign exchange by replacing imported oil with solar energy for around a million tube wells.

Prime Minister Shehbaz 

In the annual budget, new taxes on the real estate sector aimed to generate around Rs 100 billion. Prime Minister Shehbaz said the time had come for the elite class to contribute back to the country, emphasizing that the elite must pay taxes to alleviate the financial burden on the nation.

The PM pointed out that a significant amount of tax revenue was being lost to evasion and legal disputes. He called for efforts to tap into the country's potential in agriculture, information technology, mining, and mineral sectors.

Lastly, the government rolled back a 51% hike in electricity rates for consumers using up to 200 units approved last week to comply with IMF conditions. This relief measure, effective from July to September 2024, is expected to benefit 94% of domestic consumers and alleviate economic pressures on low and middle-income families. 

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