Energy crisis to end by 2018, says Abbasi

Source: Published in Energy Crisis on Friday, February 26, 2016

LAHORE: The government will overcome the energy crisis before the end of its five-year term, Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi claimed on Thursday.

Addressing the First LPG and LNG Conference, he said, “The solution to the energy crisis lies in gas addition.”

Mr Abbasi claimed Pakistan was the only country where prices of petroleum products were lower than any other country in the world.

The government would also pass on relief to the masses in case oil prices dropped further in the international market in future, the minister added.

He said it was unfortunate that the only solution to the energy crisis was imported gas.

The minister said there had been no increase in domestic natural gas production in the last 15 years which stood at 4 billion cubic feet per day (BCFD). The demand had jumped to 8BCFD and the government was striving to enhance local production, he added.

During the term of the current government more than 67 gas discoveries were made but the rate of depletion of older gas reserves was higher than that, he informed.

He stressed the government would come up with a sustainable solution to the energy crisis.

“We are working on a pipeline project worth Rs150bn and will start work on another pipeline costing Rs250bn to provide gas to the consumers.”

Twenty two per cent of the population receives gas through pipelines whereas 78pc depends on firewood and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), Mr Abbasi said.

He said the petroleum ministry had sent a summary to the Council of Common Interests (CCI) seeking powers to regulate LPG prices in order to provide relief to the consumers.

“LPG consumers are paying 10pc higher prices compared to gas supplied through pipelines,” Abbasi said.

Stakeholders including representatives of SNPL, SSGC, PSO and Planning Commission attended the conference.

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