The Senate Standing Committee on Petroleum, under the chairmanship of Senator Abdul Qadir, convened a meeting to discuss a range of pressing energy matters.
Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) provided insights into the ongoing supply of Natural Gas to Fauji Fertilizer Bin Qasim Limited (FFBL). MD SSGC informed the Committee about the allocated 45MMCFD Natural gas and 10MMCFD RLNG provided to FFBL against the demand of 68 MMCFD, stressing that these allocations are the maximum feasible.The SSGC said their resources are quickly depleted owing to the downward trajectory of gas production reduced from 1100 MMCFD to 750 MMCFD at present. FFBL representatives shared their operational struggles due to these limitations, citing substantial financial losses amounting to Rs. 5 billion in the first two quarters being the sole manufacturer of DAP in pakistan. If Pakistan imports Urea/DAP then national exchequer will suffer an accumulative loss of $1-1.5 billion a year.
In a pivotal move, the Committee resolved to call representatives from gas-consuming industries and fertilizer companies in the forthcoming meeting, to devise collaborative solutions that address the evolving energy landscape.
The issue of gas supply irregularities in various areas of Karachi also came under the Committee's scrutiny. SSGC revealed that substantial progress has been made, with 0.1 million meters already installed and plans to bring 0.4 million more houses under the metering system by June 2024. The Committee directed the immediate installation of meters for households utilizing gas without meters, or else discontinuing their gas connection.
The committee also received a comprehensive briefing on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives undertaken by OGDCL/PPL in Balochistan. The funds expenditure under CSR in DC head usually lapsed and not allocated appropriately. The Committee, emphasized the prioritization of education/health in Balochistan under CSR. After a brief discussion, the Committee decided to form a sub-committee to oversee the CSR initiatives undertaken in Balochistan by OGDCL/PPL.
Senator Saifullah Abro brought forward the issue of the kidnapping and murder of Dr Syed Raham Ali Shah, a dedicated SSGCL employee. MD SSGC acknowledged the tragedy and shared that the family of the deceased had been provided with compensation, including funeral expenses, 12-month salaries, and a life insurance amount of Rs. 3.5 million. The Committee recommended special consideration for accommodating the deceased's family member in SSGC, urging a review of the organization's policies in case of murder of the employees during service and his sole son may be accommodated in services as per govt policy as SSGC is also being a government entity.
The Committee also delved into concerns related to the issue of non-provision of gas supply to the residents within a 5km radius of the Jhal Magsi Oil & Gas field. The Chairman Committee recommended a joint visit by SSGC and MNA Magsi to assess the area and conduct a re-evaluation as the houses in the area are being increased many times with the passage of time from the earlier 600 houses. If government could not release the project amount in time then OGDCL which is casting Rs. 1800 /MMCFT need to be adjusted in the project completion. SSGC outlined the project's scope, costs, and timeline, with completion targeted for March 2024, contingent on the timely release of funds.
The Special Secretary Ministry of Petroleum informed that Gas in the area has not been injected yet. Earlier, MD SSGC apprised that the total planned network is 54.300Kms and prospective customers are 684. He added that the project total cost is Rs. 1047.836 million, within the cost area criteria SSGCL's share is Rs. 184.680 million while over & above cost criteria Government of Pakistan's share is Rs. 863.156 million. SSGC informed that Rs. 100 million has been allocated by GoP once the said amount is transferred work on the project will be undertaken.
Lastly, the Committee addressed the appointment of Muhammad Niaz Bugti, a subject of scrutiny due to alleged fraudulent claims. The Committee directed MD PPL to re-examine the case and check the record of Mr Niaz with Nadra, emphasizing a thorough investigation.