Asad Umar's Plan to Energize The Power Sector

For many of Pakistan’s 207 million inhabitants, electricity is a near-luxury commodity to have around the clock. This is especially true for rural areas, where there are power shortages for up to 18 hours a day. The situation in Pakistan is dire, and with the economic conditions of Pakistan as they are, there seems to be no remedy in sight.

That being said, Pakistan’s new Minister of Finance, Asad Umar, plans to revitalize the energy sector by implementing a prepaid utility bill model across Pakistan. This newer model plans to snuff out electricity thieves and bill defaulters who have not paid their dues for three consecutive months. The ECC, which is the Economic Coordination Committee presiding over economic affairs, has also decided to conduct an operational and financial audit of the energy sector in its entirety.

Such prepaid electricity models are already widespread around the world. In student condominiums in Malaysia, for example, tenants are given RFID cards that need to be topped up and plugged into their apartment’s meters. Once the prepaid amount has been exhausted, the meter starts beeping an audible warning, allowing tenants a grace period of 2 hours to top-up their card. Failure to do so in the allotted time results in the meter shutting off the electricity to their unit.