Pakistan has been grappling with a significant energy crisis for years. To address this, the government previously promoted net metering, a policy that incentivized citizens to install rooftop solar panels. However, recent developments suggest a potential shift towards gross metering, raising concerns about the future of solar energy adoption in the country.

Understanding Net Metering:

Net metering allows consumers with solar panels to offset their electricity consumption from the grid with the power they generate. Any excess solar energy produced is fed back into the grid, and the consumer receives a credit on their electricity bill. This system encourages investment in solar power by providing significant financial benefits.

The Rise of Gross Metering:

News reports in May 2024 indicated the Pakistani government’s possible adoption of gross metering. Under this system, all electricity generated by rooftop solar panels is fed into the national grid. Consumers then purchase their entire electricity needs from the grid, potentially at a higher cost compared to self-generated solar power.pen_spark.

Reasons Behind the Shift:

The proposed move towards gross metering is attributed to several factors:

  • Impact on Power Distribution Companies (DISCOs): Widespread adoption of net metering could decrease DISCO revenue as consumers rely less on the grid.
  • Financial Negotiations with IMF: Some reports suggest the shift is linked to ongoing discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Potential Implications:

The adoption of gross metering could have a significant impact on Pakistan’s solar energy lands.

  • Reduced Incentive for Solar Investment: Consumers may be discouraged from installing solar panels due to diminished financial benefits.
  • Slower Growth of Renewable Energy: The overall adoption of solar power could stagnate, hindering Pakistan’s clean energy goals.
  • Increased Reliance on Grid: Dependence on the national grid, often fueled by expensive fossil fuels, might rise.

The Current Status:

As of May 21, 2024, there are conflicting reports. The Energy Minister has denied plans to scrap net metering entirely. However, discussions regarding a potential shift to gross metering are ongoing.

The Road Ahead:

The future of net metering in Pakistan remains uncertain. Continued discussions and a clear policy framework are crucial for fostering a sustainable solar energy sector.


Pakistan’s potential move from net metering to gross metering raises concerns about the future of solar power adoption. A balanced approach that addresses the concerns of DISCOs while encouraging renewable energy development is essential for Pakistan’s energy security and environmental goals.

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