ISLAMABAD: President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF) and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Wednesday said that some amendments in the LNG policy could help country reduce energy scarcity and save billions of dollars.
He said that LNG is best suited for transport sector to replace the costly petrol costing Rs 74.29 per litre and least for the power sector where it will replace the cheapest furnace oil costing Rs 52000 per tonne or Rs 50 per litre.
Exposure of transport sector to LNG will reduce petrol consumption by billions of gallons stabilising forex reserves and reducing inflation while reducing urban pollution, he said.
Talking to a delegation of transporters, he said that government should consider bringing sales tax on imported gas from 5 percent to zero to make it viable for the private sector as increasing demand of gas companies has been discouraging many.
He said that gas utilities are demanding hefty amount under the heads of transportation, distribution, marketing and 16 percent losses (theft and leakage ect).
On the other hand Ogra wants losses at 10.63 percent while private sector has been insisting on 4.5 percent UFG which is over 400 percent above the losses in the Bangladesh.
The veteran business leader said that import price of diesel stands at S $24/ mmbtu, petrol $18/ mmbtu, furnace oil $10/ mmbtu, while LNG is available at below $7/ mmbtu in the international market; the price of LNG should remain lower than furnace oil, he added.
He asked the government to pay more attention to LNG as its price will slide in the summer 2015 while there is no chance of notable price hike in the next ten years as world’s regasification capacity is set to get a boost of 75 percent in the next 5-7 years.
He said Pakistan is to save 12 billion dollars in the oil import bill in three years due to receding prices while the saving can be augmented by 30 percent if LNG gets a policy support.
He said Asia is the biggest gas market consuming 729 trillion cubic meters of gas per annum which will become 1200 TCF soon while Pakistan’s energy requirement will be equal to 177 million tonnes of oil which call for special attention to the energy sector.