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National

March 13, 2018

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Petrol sold in Pakistan as per notified specifications: OCAC

ISLAMABAD: Dr Ilyas Fazil, chief executive officer of Oil Companies’ Advisory Council (OCAC) has said that the Euro-II petrol fuel is being sold in the country strictly in accordance with the approved specifications issued by the ministry of energy, Petroleum Division.

He said that in Pakistan RON 92 (EURO-II) is being sold after up-gradation of petrol from 87 RON and for the last ten years national refineries are using the manganese as additive in motor gasoline after extensive due diligence and after ascertaining both the US EPA and an independent EU risk assessment have confirmed that the use of MMT as octane improver in fuel will not cause adverse cause adverse effects to human health or environment.

“MMT (Methylcyclopentadienyl Manganese Tricarbonyl) is a manganese-based fuel additive used in lead replacement, as it is the only octane booster additive which enables old car engines to run with unleaded fuel. By using MMT, refineries can reduce the content of benzene, aromatic and olefins lowering more internationally recognise harmful-to-health chemicals. MMT is used across the world in countries which are octane deficient,” Dr Fazil said.

He said that vested interest is keeping alive the issue regarding use of octane boosters in motor gasoline and to this effect the ministry is being pressurised for actions which will badly hurt country’s economy.

He, however, has conceded that petrol specifications in Pakistan do not prescribe any limits or any additives which they should. He said that the quantity of Manganese-based octane booster used in Pakistan does not pose any health risk.

He said, “Of the 500mt per year consumption, manganese is approximately 120mt only (24,4%). Of this only 25-30% (less than 40mt/year) is released from the tailpipe. For an area of 800,000 square km including deserts which have high manganese, it is impossible to detect the manganese released from the tailpipe. The gasoline consumption in Pakistan is only 6 million tons as compared to 340 million tons in US and 30 million tons in India. “So one should look at the absolute manganese consumption.”

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