负责南亚和中亚事务的助理国务卿艾丽斯·威尔斯（Alice Wells）被委派执行这项任务，并多次发表过去的讽刺言论。巴基斯坦前大使侯赛因·哈卡尼（Hussain Haqqani）是一位新成员，他在巴基斯坦以反巴基斯坦情绪闻名。他断断续续地损害巴基斯坦的国家利益。根据他最近于2020年5月18日发表在《外交官》上的一篇文章：
在这里，我们认为NEPRA将48个月的施工期定为标准，是基于其调查，是世界平均水平的正常做法。另外，27-29个月的竣工期创造了纪录，这甚至比中国同规模项目的工期还要短。遗憾的是，没有人在意到赞助人所做的巨大努力，在融资结束前，巨大的风险初始担保、过桥贷款几乎覆盖了项目总成本的60%，超过30万工人（他们甚至在一开始被认为是中国囚犯）每周24/7不间断地工作，一些关键材料和设备，用于减少项目的时间和成本。他们也不在乎它的任务是减少巴基斯坦主要负荷中心超过10个小时的停电，振兴巴基斯坦工业。为确定早期调试的经济影响，应注意，后期调试的违约赔偿金通常由CPPA-G根据每月每千瓦2.5美元计算。考虑到CPPA-G单方面将该费率应用于所有电力项目，尽管存在可用性系数，并且鉴于高铁是可用性系数最高的项目之一，因此，由于早期试运行，巴基斯坦经济的经济效益可以说约为1亿美元（2.5 x 1243美元，517千瓦x 21个月x 1.5）的最低限度。国家能否最大限度地利用这种电力，取决于政府的经济政策。
尽管巴基斯坦电力部门因政府效率低下而面临上述严重问题，但媒体的审判已倾向于对独立发电商进行诽谤。因此，必须弄清楚是谁的错，而不是通过对 ipps 进行媒体审判来威胁他们。这样做，巴基斯坦只会失去投资者信心，这次可能会使投资商永久性地失去信心。
The US hasintensified its war against China in Pakistan. The target is to derail CPEC andcreate misunderstandings between China and Pakistan. Despite the intensiveattacks by the US or India, however, the relations between China and Pakistanare unchanged. The nature and depth of our relationships are beyond theunderstanding of others. We are “Iron Brothers,” a unique term used forChina-Pakistan relations.
AssistantSecretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Alice Wells was deputedfor this task and shed past sarcastic remarks on several occasions. A newaddition is Ex-Pakistani Ambassador Hussain Haqqani, who is known well inPakistan for his anti-Pakistan sentiments. He has been harming Pakistan’snational interests on and off. According to one of his recent articles datedMay 18th, 2020, in The Diplomat:
(i) Excess set-upcosts of Rs. 32.46 billion was allowed to the two coal-based Chinese plants dueto misrepresentation by sponsors regarding the ‘Interest During Construction’(IDC).
According to asource, HSR clearly provided in the tariff petition that its constructionperiod was around 27 months instead of 48 months, as assumed in the UpfrontTariff 2014. The company applied for this because the provisions of the UpfrontTariff 2014 itself clearly provided that interest during construction wassupposed to be calculated based on a pre-defined disbursement plan by NEPRAinstead of actual disbursement plan. NEPRA approved interest duringconstruction based on the provisions of Upfront Tariff 2014. Therefore, therewas no misrepresentation ever made from HSR’s side concerning either theconstruction period or interest during construction.
(ii) IDC shall notbe adjusted for any variation on account of actual expenditure percentageduring the construction period.
As per the clauseabove of NEPRA Upfront Tariff 2014, IDC was never supposed to be adjusted basedon the actual and entire benefit of early commissioning that was to accrue tothe project sponsors.
Here we believethat NEPRA set the 48-month construction period as standard based on itsinvestigation that the worldwide average level is normal practice. Furthermore,the 27-29-month completion period created the record, which was even shorterthan the same size project in China. Unfortunately, nobody cares about the hugeeffort done by the sponsor, the huge risky initial sponsored guaranteed bridgeloans which cover almost 60% of total project cost involved before financingclosed, the more than 3,000 thousand workers continually working 24/7 each week(who were even considered as Chinese prisoners in the beginning by the media),or some key material and equipment that was used to reduce the time and cost ofthe project. They also don't care that its mission was to diminish the more than10 hours of blackouts in the major load centers of the country and revivePakistani industries. To determine the economic impact of early commissioning,it may be noted that liquidated damages for late commissioning are typicallycalculated by CPPA-G based on USD 2.5 per kW per month. Considering such a rateis unilaterally applied to all power projects by CPPA-G despite theiravailability factor and given that HSR has amongst the highest availabilityfactor, economic benefits to the economy of Pakistan due to early commissioningcan be said to be around USD 100 million (USD 2.5 x 1,243,517 kW x 21 months x1.5) as a bare minimum. Whether the country can maximize the benefits of suchavailability of power is up to the economic policies of the government.
(ii) Entitlementof an excess Return on Equity (ROE) of $27.4 million annually, over the entireproject life of 30 years in the case of the Sahiwal plant.
A higher imputedIDC approved by NEPRA in contrast to actual IDC has been used as the basis forcalculating annual excess ROE of USD 27.4 million.
Apparently, thisgap has been based on the understanding that excess project cost has beenallowed by NEPRA for HSR of Rs. 13.16 billion, the majority of which relates toIDC. According to a source, although the company actually saved on account ofIDC, its overall project cost was almost equal to the project cost approved byNEPRA, and the Committee Report misrepresented the financial numbers related toactual project cost of HSR. It has been told that the Committee Report onlyconsidered fixed assets capitalized under the “property, plant, and equipment”head of the balance sheet while completely ignoring the costs related to land,Sinosure fee, financing fees and charges, customs duties and taxes, etc. capitalizedin other heads of the balance sheet, which amounts to around Rs. 20 billion incost. This alone seals the false analysis prepared against HSR in the CommitteeReport.
(iii) Theestimated excess payment, keeping in mind the 6 percent annual rupee depreciationagainst the dollar, works out to a whopping Rs—291.04 billion (approximately$1.8 billion).
The claim ofexcess payment of Rs. 291.04 billion does not hold anymore when it isestablished that the actual project cost approved by NEPRA is not more than theproject cost incurred by HSR, as explained above.
Moreover, it ishighly unfortunate that whenever the government officials feel necessary tojustify their claims, they make unrealistic assumptions or continue to acceptthat Pakistan will continue to remain a faltering state by using weak long-termeconomic assumptions. In this case, the Committee Report has assumed that therupee will depreciate from the current Rs. 150-160 per USD to a whopping Rs.900 per USD in 2046! By way of such an assumption, the company has magnifiedthe number from Rs. 123 billion to Rs. 291 billion.
HSR, amongst otherIPPs, is facing a plethora of issues that escalate the risks for the investor.IPPs suffer on account of fuel price adjustment disputes, O&M cost deficit,disapprovals by NEPRA on account of payments made to government institutions(Pakistan Railways, Port Qasim Authority, Customs Office, etc.), excessivedelays in payments to IPPs, massive loss due to devaluation of rupee, etc. Suchissues seriously erode the earning potential of power projects and underminethe guarantees promised by the government of Pakistan in power policies andtariff documents.
Whatever themotive is of the prevailing media trial against independent power producers, itmust be reminded that capital markets never forgive such mistakes. Foreigninvestors consider Pakistan as a high-risk and broken country to invest in.China has sought to correct this image by promising to invest billions ofdollars in Pakistan through CPEC; this is a shut-up call to Western projectfinanciers who are unwilling to invest in Pakistan or contribute towards itsdevelopment.
There may be someshort-term respite found if the independent power producers are generous enoughto forgive the government for their foolishness. Electricity cost in the last2-3 years has risen sharply, primarily due to a higher fuel price, higherinterest rate, exchange rate devaluation, under collection by DISCOs fromconsumers, high transmission losses and cost, and continuance of highlyinefficient and expensive GENCOs operated by the government rather than factorsattributable to IPPs.
Despite the abovegrave issues engulfing the power sector of Pakistan on account of thegovernment’s inefficiencies, the media trial has been skewed towards maligningthe IPPs. Therefore, it must be made clear who is at fault rather thanstrong-arming IPPs by conducting a media trial of them. Pakistan will only loseinvestor confidence and may do so rather permanently this time.
Despite theintensive attacks by the US or India, the relations between China and Pakistanare unchanged. The nature and depth of our relationships are beyond theunderstanding of others. We are “Iron Brothers,” a unique term used forChina-Pakistan relations.