Monday January 30, 2023

Gas load management plan for winter: Govt to give top priority to domestic sector

Gas will be closed down to the non-export industry i.e. the CNG sector

October 27, 2022

ISLAMABAD: The government has decided to extend top priority to the domestic sector in the winter season for ensuring gas supply three times for cooking purposes with full pressure under the gas load management plan to be implemented from November 1, 2022 till February end of 2023.

Gas will be closed down to the non-export industry i.e. the CNG sector. The current gas supply to the export sector would be halved and, more importantly, the present supply of RLNG to the power sector would be reduced by 40 percent, a senior official of the Energy Ministry told The News.

Top officials of the Petroleum Division and gas companies here on Wednesday put their heads to fine-tune the gas load management plan to be tabled before the prime minister for approval.

However, the government, even after the diversion of 250-350mmcfd RLNG to the domestic sector, will ensure gas to domestic customers only three times for cooking purposes as the piped gas deficit is huge.

“Both the gas utilities – Sui Northern and Sui Southern – will also import LPG of 20,000 metric tons on daily basis with the price of over Rs2,300 per cylinder apart from charging Rs7,000 one-time cost of the cylinder.

“The concerned officials have worked out in the Sui Northern’s system, an estimated gas deficit of 250mmcfd in November, 400mmcfd in December and 700-750mmcfd in January, and in the Sui Southern’s system 250mmcfd in November, 300mmcfd in December, 350mmcfd in January and 250mmcfd in February 2023.”

This means the country would be having a gas deficit that would touch over 1.1 billion cubic feet of gas per day in the peak winter month of January 2023. However, Sui Northern will have availability of RLNG 600mmcfd and local gas 750mmcfd in November, RLNG of 800mmcfd and 800 local gas in December, and RLNG of 800mmcfd and 800mmcfd local gas in January 2023, and the same gas availability in February 2023. Likewise, Sui Southern will have 75mmcfd RLNG and 875mmcfd local gas each in November, December, January, and February.

The government has decided to reduce the LNG gas supply to the Power Division to 250mmcfd from 470mmcfd in November 2022. The gas supply to the power sector may further plummet in January to 200mmcfd. However, in February the gas supply to the power sector may increase up to 350mmcfd. The government would increase electricity production based on coal by up to 4,000MW. The country would also continue to rely on nuclear power generation. The demand for electricity in the winter season oscillates between 9,000 MW and 12,000MW only.