SNGPL withdraws decision to halt supply 6 days a week for Punjab

ISLAMABAD: Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) on Saturday took back its Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) supply plan on government’s pressure that envisioned one day a week gas supply to Punjab filling stations.
The SNGPL on Saturday morning was about to issue a new gas load management plan for the CNG sector, under which gas Company announced only a day gas supply in a week to filling stations in Punjab from next coming week largely because of increase in gas shortfall.  
SNGPL has withdrawn its decision of shutting down economic activity of CNG filling stations for six-day a week only because of intervention from the federal government, a senior official at Petroleum Ministry said. 
He said after the release of gas supply plan on the official website of the SNGPL, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources intervened and the gas Company erased its plan put on the website.
A senior official of SNGPL asking not to be named said earlier SNGPL had issued new gas load management schedule under which CNG outlets were to open for one day in a week from August 28 (6am) to August 29 (6am). To him, the Ministry intervened only due to unfavourable political situation despite the fact the gas Company could not fulfil the demands of its SNGPL gas consumers. 
The decision would help owners of millions of CNG converted vehicles and relieve thousands of vehicle gas consumers from making queues on CNG filling stations a day and that was also the part of the incumbent government’s manifesto.
After the decision of Supreme Court of Pakistan to eliminate Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC) it was hoped Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) would decrease CNG prices for consumers and now CNG stations would save up to Rs 13 per kilogramme. It was expected OGRA would re-calculate CNG prices for the consumers. And the latest decision would also help millions of commuters to pay reduced fares, increase government’s income, save gas and electricity while reviving Rs 450 billion CNG industry. 
Gas imports will start before the end of the current year, improving the overall situation while the gap would be bridged totally within five years, official said.
Officials at SNGPL said prior to the start of winter season gas demand had witnessed an increase. They said gap between demand and supply had worsened due to reduction in the gas supply from gas fields due to annual maintenance, while the gas import was planned to start by the end of this year. They said it had become difficult now a days to maintain gas pressure at required level due to increase in gas shortfall and supply situation would improve till the time the supply was increased to the required level  
They said at present, supply of gas from the gas fields had been reduced, while demand was increasing with each passing day.
The CNG sector has been contributing immensely in provision of affordable transportation to millions, jobs to hundreds of thousands of people, reduction in environmental pollution and reducing oil import bill. 

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