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Coronavirus
LOW Source: covid.gov.pk
Pakistan Deaths
28,709
524hr
Pakistan Cases
1,284,189
30324hr
0.82% positivity
Sindh
475,248
Punjab
442,950
Balochistan
33,479
Islamabad
107,626
KPK
179,928

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, on Thursday, asked the government to take stringent measures through effective diplomacy to remove obstacles in the agreement on Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project, so that it could be completed without further delay.

The committee, which met with Malik Muhammad Ehsan Ullah Tiwana in the chair, was given briefing of the TAPI and Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline projects by senior officials of the Ministry of Energy and the Petroleum Division.

In his briefing to the committee, Secretary Petroleum Division Dr Arshad told the committee that TAPI is the cheapest pipeline project, adding that in the $10 billion projects, Pakistan has to pay $200 million and in return the country would receive 1200 mmcfd gas.

He also informed the committee that LNG prices could be increased internationally in coming three months, which would also impact the gas prices in Pakistan.

Currently, he added the country is facing a shortfall of 800 mmcfd shortfall of natural gas.

He said the prime minister has convened a meeting on the increase in gas prices, adding the prime minister has directed revising the rise in gas prices.

He said that work is under way on reducing the gas prices, adding the prime minister has also called for gas supply to the industrial sector on priority basis.

He further said the government is also working on the right gas, which is cheaper than the LNG.

However, the secretary added that a major issue is of the circular debt and talks are also under way with the IMF on circular debt.

Another major issue, he added, was that seven to eight percent gas wells are drying down annually and so far 10 gas wells owned by the OGDCL have dried down.

The committee appreciated the dedication and sincere efforts of the present management of the Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division) towards TAPI gas pipeline project.

The committee, however, directed the ministry to take stringent measures to remove obstacles to the agreements, if any through effective diplomacy, so that the TAPI project could be completed without further delay.

The committee directed the Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division) to develop a proper liaison with all the concerned countries to accomplish the TAPI project at the earliest as the said project is equally beneficial for all countries and would help for economic growth of the region as well.

The committee, while discussing the Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline project, expressed concern that the said project could not be completed due to US sanctions on Iran as it could become viable for the domestic needs and industrial growth of Pakistan as well.

The meeting was attended by Zain Hussain Qureshi, Jamshed Thomas, Ali Zahid, Muhammad Khan Daha, Zahra Wadood Fatemi, Maiza Hameed, Ehsanur Rehman Mazari, and others.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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