The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has announced it is investing $50 million in the 102MW Gulpur project on the Poonch River in Pakistan, while also mobilizing a further $72 million for the project in a bid to help to address the country’s power shortage, support lower cost energy generation, and help develop renewable energy sources.

Being developed by Mira Power Limited, a subsidiary of South Korea’s Korea South East Power Co. Ltd. (KOSEP), the Gulpur project is the company’s first power generation project in Pakistan.

"This investment will help us utilize Pakistan’s significant hydropower resource and help address the energy crisis in a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way," commented Yi, Bo Seuk, General Manager of KOSEP.

Pakistan has been facing a severe power deficit in recent years with daily blackouts of up to six hours or more in many areas, hindering industrial growth and adversely affecting the quality of life for millions.

"Our aim is to help address Pakistan’s power shortage by supporting the development of renewable energy resources that will reduce the country’s reliance on more expensive fuel imports for power generation," said Wiebke Schloemer, IFC Regional Industry Head for Infrastructure, Europe, Middle East and North Africa. "We also hope to encourage other international investors to invest in Pakistan’s power sector."

Pakistan represents IFC’s second-largest exposure in the MENA region, with over $5.6 billion in cumulative investments committed to date. IFC’s current investment exposure in Pakistan is about $1.1 billion in over 45 companies in sectors including infrastructure (energy, ports, and transport), financial markets, and general manufacturing and services.