29 October 2021

Pakistan Matiari-Lahore ±660 kV HVDC transmission line becomes operational

In September 2021, the Pakistan Matiari-Lahore ±660 kV HVDC transmission project (the “Project”) formally started its commercial operation. The Project was invested, constructed and operated by China Electric Power Equipment and Technology Co., Ltd. (CET), a subsidiary of the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC). Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan inaugurated the ceremony. Nong Rong, Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan, Hamad Azar, Pakistani Minister of Energy, and Xin Baoan, Chairman of SGCC, attended the ceremony and delivered speeches. Following the achievement of financial close in February 2019, the Project was put into commercial operation despite great challenges posed by the pandemic, which is another important milestone for the Project.  

Spanning approximately 886 kilometres, with a transmission capacity of 4,000 MW, the Project received a total of approximately USD 1.658 billion of initial investment. It is Pakistan's first high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line, as well as the first BOOT (build-own-operate-transfer) transmission project developed by a foreign investor, with a 25-year operation period.

King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) has been deeply involved in the Project since May 2015. Acting as the lead counsel, KWM coordinated overseas lawyers to provide comprehensive services across the jurisdictions of the Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR and Pakistan. Our services cover cross-border investment, financing, engineering and construction, company incorporation, claim and counter-claim, and electricity tariff application. In recognition of KWM’s performance and contribution, CET sent a thank-you letter along with  medals to KWM lawyers.

The project team was led by partners Tian Wenjing, Liu Zhigang, Lv Yinghao, and Liu Zhizhi, supported by counsel Du Rui, associates Yang Chengfei and Zhang Chen.

“We are honoured to receive the thank-you letter and medal from the client!”, said Ms. Tian, “This is recognition of not only the project team’s work but also KWM’s brand and comprehensive strength. The Project is especially meaningful in that it shows client’s long-term trust in us for such key power and energy project between the two countries with large-scale investments. We not only provided one-stop services prior to the financial  close, but also extended our services to the project construction and operation stages. For us, it is a meaningful attempt to provide full process and one-stop services for overseas ‘investment, construction and operation’ projects.”

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