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ISLAMABAD: The Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE) has directed Petroleum Division not to curtail gas from domestic sector for meeting the shortfall of industrial sector, well informed sources told Business Recorder.

On October 15, 2020, Petroleum Division briefed the CCoE that SSGC would require 200 MMCFD of LNG to meet shortfall during months of October, November, 2020 & February, 2021. In December, 2020 and January, 2021, the residential demand would increase three times on SNGPL system and two times on SSGC system. Consequently, it is expected that there would be combined shortfall of 500 MMCFD in January 2021 on both systems. This shortfall would require curtailment/mitigation measures through diversion from other sectors. The Chairman CCoE observed that domestic sector was a priority sector for supply of gas as approved by the Federal Cabinet, therefore, no curtailment may be made from this sector to supply others during winter. It was suggested that there should be a proper mechanism to assess expected demand and supply of gas in the country during winter season.

The house was informed that if 17kms pipeline at Port Qasim could be completed by mid-December 2020, an additional 150 MMCFD LNG would be available through private sector which will be sold to K-Electric. Petroleum Division apprised the meeting about various actions taken and proposed alternatives to meet shortfall on both systems as follows:

SSGC work has been mobilised on 17 kms pipeline pending 5 kms ROW;(ii) PSO/PLL has arranged/arranging supplies of 1200 MMCFD Dec/Jan;(iii) PGPCL is prepared to supply LNG of up to 150 MMCFD to KE from Dec to Feb once the 17kms line is built and ;(iv) curtailment plan prepared in both cases for SSGCL.

SNGPL (i) need to do pressure profiling in Dec/Jan for domestic consumers ;(ii) shut LNG to CNG for two days a week from mid Dec to end January and ( iii) power sector will be given less gas than demanded in January.

After detailed discussion, the CCoE took the following decisions: (i) 150 MMCFD RLNG will be imported utilizing excess capacity of the import terminal by the private sector. To meet the demand, PLL/SSGC may directly decide to utilise the available capacity, in case private sector fails to import additional LNG;(ii) work on 17 KM pipeline will be expedited to supply RLNG to SSGCL and issue of Right of Way (RoW) 5 KM will be settled with Government of Sindh on urgent basis;(iii) Minister for Energy will keep the public informed of the status of approvals required for Completion of 17 KM pipeline at Port Qasim;(iv) Petroleum Division was directed not to curtail gas from domestic sector to meet the shortfall of the industrial sector as the Federal Cabinet has already assigned priority to the supply of gas to domestic sector. Explicit approval of the Cabinet shall be sought for any change in this regard and ;(v) CCoE also recommended that Minister for Industries and Production may also be included as Member in the composition of CCoE.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020