Gas load shedding continues
ISLAMABAD: Despite government claims, natural gas users (domestic and industrial) are not getting regular supply. “The government’s claims that regular supply has been restored are incorrect. Gas pressure is so low that it’s hard to boil water,” a Rawalpindi resident said on Friday.
Gas load shedding is a regular phenomenon for domestic and industrial users.
Amanullah Jadoon, the petroleum and natural resources minister, had said several times that regular supply had been restored after the repair of the gas purification plant in Sui.
However, residents of Islamabad, Rawalpindi and other cities were complaining of the low pressure of gas and load shedding.
The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) has noted reports appearing in the press about the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited’s (SNGPL) low gas pressure and load shedding and ordered SNGPL to comply with the Gas Supply and Demand Management Programme for 2004-05 as approved by the government, stated an OGRA press release on Friday.
OGRA also ordered SNGPL to comply with the license conditions and service standards that made it mandatory for the company to ensure security and continuity of gas supply at an adequate pressure.
OGRA would continue monitoring the performance of gas companies for effective enforcement of the government’s policy guidelines as well as the specific conditions of their licenses aimed at ensuring quality service and protection of consumers’ interests.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) officials said on Friday that Pakistan had suffered millions of dollars in losses as a result of the attacks on the gas field in Sui.
Dozens of rockets fired by tribesmen damaged the main plant of the Sui gas complex on January 8, drastically cutting supplies to industrial and domestic consumers across the country for more than a week.
Losses to the plant are estimated to be around Rs 1.32 billion ($22.3 million), Muhammad Iftikhar, a senior PPL official said.
“The Pakistani government incurred losses of Rs 35 million (about $500,000) per day in revenue and royalty due to the eight-day suspension of the gas supplies,” Mr Iftikhar said.
“Even after the repair of the main plant, the company is unable to restore full gas pressure in the main pipeline, causing a revenue loss of Rs 17.5 million per day,” he added. Gas production has plummeted to 348 million cubic feet per day, half of normal production before the attacks, he said.
Many gas-run industrial plants in Pakistan also suffered daily losses of around Rs 120 million ($2.3 million) for eight days, as they had to use costlier fuels to run their operations, Mr Iftikhar said.
Welcoming the deployment of regular army troops in Sui, he hoped that the move would provide a secure environment for smooth operations. agencies