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ISLAMABAD: To curtail the gas crisis, Pakistan must prioritise the expansion of existing terminals under the approved Third-Party Access (TPA) rules on an immediate basis, while eventually transitioning towards onshore terminals for greater energy security.

Highlighting the achievements of Engro Elengy Terminal (EETL), Yusuf Siddiqui, CEO of EETL, shared that the EETL has set new industry benchmarks in over five years of its safe and essentially non-stop operations with an availability factor of around 98 percent. The EETL now contributes around 15 percent gas supplies to Pakistan and can be considered the country’s largest “gas field” (630-690 mmscfd).

As the most utilised regasification terminal in the world, it has enabled Pakistan to save more than $3 billion through import substitution of furnace oil. Since its inception, the EETL has achieved send-out of more than 1,200 billion cubic feet (BCF) of RLNG/natural gas. Further, its partnership with world-class organisations such as Royal Vopak of Netherlands has brought global expertise and foreign investment to Pakistan for the development of LNG sector.

He stated that LNG imports, which now constitute around 30 percent of the total gas supply mix, have been instrumental to bridge energy shortages as the production of indigenous gas continues to decline drastically. To mitigate gas shortfall in future, the government has adopted a favourable policy of encouraging private sector involvement in the LNG sector, but there is a need to remove any roadblocks that impede operationalization of additional capacity of existing LNG terminals under TPA rules, as allowed under the LNG Policy 2011 and LNG Supply Agreement (LSA) with SSGC.

The TPA will allow private players to have access to the terminal capacity and bring LNG in the country, with no guarantee or liability required by the government or state-owned entities. This step will facilitate LNG market development as whole and mitigate circular debt in the gas sector.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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