ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr Musadik Malik on Tuesday said additional crude oil would be imported from Russia as the first cargo carrying 100,000 tons of Russian oil has reached Pakistan.
He announced that regular import of Russian crude oil would be started and Pakistan might import from Russia up to one-third of total fuel imports.
The minister maintained that Russia offered a good discounted rate. Payment would be made in Chinese currency and the end consumers would be passed on the benefits of imported cheaper Russian crude oil, he assured.
However, he refused to public the commercial agreement with Russia.
The minister further said that the Russian oil specifications were already tested at the local refineries which would process the Russian crude and later blend it with Arabian light oil.
“Local oil refineries are old and processed Arabian crude oil. Therefore, our refineries can refine an estimated 35 per cent of Russian crude. The capacity of refining may improve following approval of a refinery policy,” he added.
In addition, he said they are holding talks to secure a $10 billion investment from a GCC country and soon agreement would be signed. The present government was also working on the auction of 16 to 24 offshore blocks.
Malik said the government is looking into the draft contract with Azerbaijan government. Under the deal, he said, Azerbaijan would provide LNG cargo on a monthly basis at a lower price as compared with global LNG trade market. There would be no binding on imported LNG cargo and Pakistan can reject without any penalty.
In addition, he said a team from Turkmenistan arrived in Pakistan recently and both sides signed a Joint Implementation Plan. The PTI government had not signed any contract during its four-year government, he said.
Pakistan had also invited European countries to set up LNG terminals as Pakistan had the potential to become a transit route for gas transportation from Central Asia to Europe.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2023