Pakistan has historically faced repeated energy crises, suffering from a fragmented planning system, wasteful consumption, and weak production capacity. As of 2005, only half of the population actually had access to electricity, while those that do experience frequent blackouts and shortages.
Pakistan’s growing urbanization (3.1 percent) and industrial production (4.9 percent) – both key motors of economic growth – demand more energy every day, but production capacity remains weak and distribution systems inflexible. As the country’s population (already the sixth largest in the world) continues to grow, the deficiencies in Pakistan’s energy infrastructure are set to challenge the incumbent regime and the long-standing influence of the military – raising speculation about its internal stability and long-term economic future.
Pakistan depends heavily on energy imports and is projected to see a seven-fold increase in its energy demand by 2030. Much of this increase would have to come from expanded gas imports and domestic production. Pakistan’s economy is one of the world’s most gas-dependent, drawing on reserves in the restive Baluchistan province. In 2006, this province, home to 68 percent of the country's estimated 28 trillion cubic feet (TCF) of gas reserves, accounted for 36-45 percent of domestic production. Balochi insurgents, however, often target the country’s energy infrastructure, undermining Pakistan’s energy security and any prospect of regional energy schemes. More >>>