KARACHI: Pakistan may not be able to import gas from Tehran despite a nuclear deal between Iran and US which has renewed hopes for improved economic ties between the neighbouring countries, a business leader said Monday.
Iran has completed its part of the pipeline to transport 750 mmcfd gas to Pakistan while Islamabad has started implementation of 880 km of pipeline but it hasn’t considered upgradation of gas distribution network, said Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha, central leader of the APCNGA.
In a statement issued here today, he said that existing old-fashioned gas infrastructure cannot sustain the pressure of Iranian gas; therefore, it must be improved immediately, otherwise all efforts to tame energy crisis through Iran gas will go down the drain.
Paracha said that Pakistan initiated efforts to import LNG a decade back but gas utilities didn’t upgraded capacity of pipelines which has resulted in underutilisation of LNG.
The LNG terminal can handle 660 mmcfd gas but the pipelines cannot transport over 325 mmcfd which is another example of mismanagement and incompetence of gas companies for which country and masses are made to pay the price.
He said that LNG and Iranian gas is costly than the locally produced natural gas; therefore, gas companies should be asked to reduced gas losses standing at 14 percent to internationally accepted standard of 1.5 to 2 percent. The business leader asked the government to take stern action against officials foiling efforts to reduce losses in transmission and distribution and contain theft of gas.