Located 65km from Rawalpindi city, the 720MW project will be developed by a consortium of Pakistani and Chinese companies. It is scheduled to be commissioned in 2020.

Under the Power Generation Policy 2002, the project will be transferred to the government following completion of 30 years of the project’s operational life.

Rawalpindi district officer Mian Muhammad Nawaz told the Dawn: "The Punjab-EPA, in Rawalpindi, approved the project after receiving the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report.

"The report has now been sent to Lahore for final approval. The Punjab-EPA director general will soon announce the date for the public hearing of the project."

Expected to generate 3,436GWh of electricity annually to address the country’s power shortages, the run-of-river hydropower project will be connected to the National Grid of Pakistan (WAPDA Grid).

Rawalpindi commissioner Zahid Saeed said: "The Chinese investor would start procuring land soon and the government will provide assistance to the company.

"However, the government would be involved in negotiations over prices of land and this would be decided between the landowners and the company."

Power generated from the project will be sold to National Transmission and Dispatch Company (NTDC) under a 30-year power purchase agreement.