Pakistan to shut malls, restaurants early to conserve energy amid economic crisis
The measures have been announced as the International Monetary Fund delayed the payment of $1.1 billion funding that was due in November.
Pakistan on Tuesday announced a series of measures, including closing all malls and markets by 8.30 pm, in an attempt to conserve energy amid an economic crisis, reported Al Jazeera.
The ruling Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) approved the National Energy Conservation Plan, which is expected to save the country about Rs 6,200 crore (2,273 crore Indian rupees). The country will also impose an additional duty on inefficient electric fans and halt their production from July 1.
Wedding halls and restaurants in the country will close at 10 pm, while power consumption in government offices will be reduced to 30%, according to the latest plan.
“No production of incandescent bulbs will be allowed after February 1, 2023, and a duty will also be imposed on them,” Defence Minister Khawaja Asif said, reported Dawn.
He added: “The decision would help the country save Rs 22 billion [about 806 crore Indian rupees] per annum, whereas the federal government departments would have to install energy efficient electric appliances, including fans and LED bulbs to avert excessive power consumption.”
The government has also announced a review of water rates to ensure the conservation of the natural resource.
The measures have been taken as the International Monetary Fund delayed the payment of $1.1 billion (Rs 9,111 crore) funding that was due in November, reported Al Jazeera. The country is also facing a delay in getting international financing of more than $30 billion (Rs 2.4 lakh crore) that includes debt repayments and energy imports.
The economic crisis comes months after Pakistan faced a devastating flood that displaced nearly 3.3 crore people of its 23 population.