Islamabad, June 8 (IANS) In an attempt to save energy, the Pakistan National Economic Council (NEC) has decided to order the closure of markets across the country at 8:30 pm, Geo News reported.
The NEC took the decision on Wednesday during a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, which was attended by the chief ministers of all the provinces.
The NEC met a day after President Ari Alvi approved the reconstitution of the body with Shehbaz Sharif as its chairman.
The meeting was attended by the chief ministers of Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab, while Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was represented by its chief secretary Shehzad Khan.
According to a statement, the chief ministers appreciated the steps being taken by the federal government to deal with the energy crisis and the four provinces agreed on the proposal to close markets at 8.30 pm.
The statement also said that the chief ministers of Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan have asked for two days to implement the decision as they wish to consult the traders’ associations in their respective provinces, Geo News reported.
The chief ministers also backed the decisions of the federal cabinet on nationwide measures to deal with the energy crisis and assured their full cooperation in tackling the crisis.
Addressing a press conference, Power Minister Khurrum Dastagir said that the early closure of markets and ‘work from home’ can save electricity.
“The electricity being produced in the country is 22,000 MW and the requirement is 26,000 MW,” said the minister, adding that the energy shortfall in the country is 4,000 MW.
He also assured the media that the industrial sector in the country is being provided with uninterrupted power supply.
He added that 1,100 MW will be added to the national grid once the K-2 Nuclear Power Plant starts production.