Sindh Engro Coal Mining’s $1.6bn Thar coal mining & power project has been launched by Pakistan Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and former President Asif Ali Zardari at Thar Coalfield Block-II near Islamkot, Sindh, Pakistan.

Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC), a joint venture between Government of Sindh and Engro, will initially provide 660MW of power for Pakistan’s energy starved industrial units through the new project.

Scheduled to be completed in 2017, the project will help prompt economic development and bring energy security to the country.

Earlier, Engro chief executive officer Shamsuddin Ahmed Shaikh said Engro had started a joint venture in power sector with Sindh Government by acquiring Block-II of Thar Coal area, comprising 100 square kilometer.

In the first phase, availability of two billion tons coal has been estimated in Block-II while the process of coal mining and establishment of power project, will be completed in three and half years.

Initially, the project will generate 660MW and significantly will generate 5,000MW upon completion of other phases.