118m afs power bills payable by cement factory
PUL-I-KHUMRI (PAN): A cement manufacturing factory has to pay 118 million afghanis in unpaid electricity bills to the power utility in northern Baghlan province, an official claimed on Thursday.
The Ghori Cement Factory has failed to pay the outstanding amount despite repeated reminders by the Ministry of Mines, Deputy Director of Baghlan Breshna Sherkat Abdul Azeem Ayubi told Pajhwok Afghan News.
He said they would seek the unpaid bills from the Ministry of Mines. After the factory and a coal mine were privatised, outstanding money against both increased to 104 million afghanis, with the factory’s arrears standing at 58 million afs.
Since the start of this solar year, Ayubi said the cement factory had consumed electricity worth more than 53 million afs. The factory later paid the electricity directorate 55 million in cash and cement worth 2.5 million afs, he said.
“In 24 hours, the Ghori Cement Factory consumes 46,920 kilowatts of electricity, which is priced at 281,520 afghanis,” the deputy director explained.
But Afghan Coal Company Director Islamuddin said a year back when he took charge, the cement factory and the coal mine owed 111 million afghanis to the electricity directorate.
He said 60 million afghanis of the outstanding amount had been paid and the rest would be cleared soon. He argued when the factory was privatised, some sections were required to be reconstructed and at the time the production had been low.
However, the factory production later increased and it would be able to pay the outstanding electricity bills in the near future, Islamuddin said.
Despite efforts, Pajhwok was unable to establish any contract with Mines Ministry officials for comments in this regard.
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