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Economy

Pakistan blackouts choke economy as China power plants go unpaid

CPEC-linked suppliers await $1.5bn dues; industry disruptions hinder exports

ISLAMABAD -- Electricity outages are disrupting life and business in Pakistan as the cash-strapped government struggles to compensate Chinese power suppliers, complicating efforts to resuscitate the ailing economy.

Waheed Ahmed, a taxi driver in Rawalpindi, complained that the power goes out for 8 hours a day, making an ongoing heat wave unbearable. Mumtaz Baloch, a government employee living in a rural area of the southwestern province of Balochistan, said the situation there is even worse, with just six hours of electricity per day.

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