Islamabad: The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Friday said government’s claim of an extra-ordinary 39 per cent hike in CNG consumption is debateable.
According to a CNG association, the consumption has witnessed a nominal growth of 0.4 per cent in 2011, it said.
How come CNG consumption increased when a good number of the filling stations remained closed for almost five months in 2011 due to load management, Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President PEW questioned.
Data regarding consumption should not be kept secret, it should be made public so that all stakeholders and masses know the facts, he demanded.
Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that government is planning to lift prices of CNG to Rs 100 per kg which will affect almost every citizen of this country.
Decisions should not be based on consumption only; social benefit, tax contribution and other aspects should also be considered, he demanded.
A middle-size industry which consumes 10 MMcf natural gas is enough to keep 34000 cars running for a workweek.
Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that 57 per cent vehicles in Pakistan are using CNG. The consumption of 3.4 million vehicles is half the intake of two power plants owned by an influential politician.
Two more natural gas-fired power plants of the same political figure will be online soon for which ground is being prepares, he said adding that every Pakistan will be made to pay for that commercial venture.
He said that steps like ban on import of CNG kits and cylinders and import duty on CNG spare-parts have already raised concerns among investors from Japan, Italy, Argentina and China.
More steps to penalise the CNG sector will send wrong signals, further tarnish our image, and scare away potential investors. It will also contribute to environmental degradation.
He informed that CNG prices in New Delhi stands at Rs 35.45 per kg after six upward revisions during the current year while prices in two different regions in Pakistan stands at Rs 77.12 and Rs 71.35/kg.
Imported gas is being sold at economical rates in India while it is costlier in Pakistan despite being a locally produced resource, he said.
Dr. Murtaza Mughal demanded of the Chief Justice Pakistan to take note of the situation, stop distribution of gas on political basis, and take steps to safeguard the interests of oil and gas companies which are fed-up of increasing demands by the politicians.
For more information, contact:
Dr. Murtaza Mughal
Pakistan Economy Watch
402, 4th Floor, Gulistan Khan House, Fazal-e-Haq Road,
82-East, Blue Area, Islamabad
Tel: +9251 251 0375
Fax: +9251 280 2449
Cell: +92321 515 7671