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All avenues to be explored to overcome gas shortage: PM

All avenues to be explored to overcome gas shortage: PM

ISLAMABAD, (SANA): Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has said that all resources be exploited and all avenues explored to overcome gas short-fall in the country and different options to import gas from the neighboring countries be examined to overcome the shortage.

The Prime Minister expressed these views while chairing a high level meeting on Gas issues at the Prime Minister’s Office on Thursday.

The Prime Minister was told that work on Iran-Pak Gas Pipeline Project and Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) Gas Pipeline Project is in progress. The Prime Minister was also informed that India is also interested in exporting LNG to Pakistan.

The meeting was informed that domestic consumption of gas constitutes 28% of the total national use of the resource. The Prime Minister gave clear directions to the Ministry of Petroleum that domestic consumers be given precedence in the gas distribution formula over other sectors of the economy so that their daily routine life remained undisturbed.

The meeting was further informed that in order to bridge the gap between demand and supply of gas in the country, load management of gas was done and this was particularly so during the winter season when the demand for gas increased exponentially.

The Prime Minister directed to rationalize gas tariffs to safeguard the interests of the common man.

The meeting was attended by Khawaja Muhammad Asif Minister for water & Power, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Minister for Petroleum, Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif Chief Minister Punjab, Jam Kamal Khan Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr Musadiq Malik Special Assistant to the Prime Minster, senior officials of the Prime Minister’s Office and Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stopped the Petroleum Ministry from raising gas tariff from July 1.

Sources said that the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) had recommended an increase of Rs 8.21 per unit for all consumers to be applied from the first of the coming month.

The prime minister, however, formally requested the petroleum ministry not to increase gas tariff before the holy month of Ramazam.

Sources said that the gas tariff would now be increased for all consumers after the end of Ramazan through a formal energy policy by the federal government.

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