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October 16, 2020

Govt to finalise gas outages plan next week

National

October 16, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCOE) on Thursday deliberated upon the gas load shedding plan for the coming winter season as the gas consumers will have to experience outages during December and January 2020-21, The News has learnt.

The government will finalize gas outages plan next week, one top official of the government disclosed to The News here on Thursday evening. However, according to the official announcement, a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCOE) was held under the Chairmanship of Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar here in Islamabad on Thursday.

The Cabinet Committee on Energy reviewed the implementation status of the North South Gas pipeline project and HSFO and LSFO demand of the power plants. It reviewed the requirement of the furnace oil for winters presented by the Ministry of Energy. The CCoE directed the ministry to plan for meeting full industrial and residential demand during winter months, without any curtailment of the load. The CCoE further directed the ministry to ensure that the utilization of all other fuel sources, including renewable and coal, is maximized before assessment of furnace oil requirement. The evaluation of domestic refining capacity would also be made so that minimum import of furnace oil is required.

The Petroleum Division presented the natural gas demand supply situation for the winters including LNG import requirements. The CCoE directed the ministry to ensure that no gas load curtailment is done for the industry and all efforts are made to meet the remaining system demand. Gas allocation priority criteria will be adhered to by the ministry during the winter season. CCoE took serious notice of the non-completion of 17km gas pipeline extension at Port Qasim by SSGC, which was a hindrance to the utilization of LNG terminal capacity. CCoE requested the Minister for Energy to personally follow up with the government of Sindh to ensure that NOC is issued for the construction of the pipeline and the project is completed by December 2020. The CCoE stressed on full utilization of excess LNG to make the additional gas available in the system. The implementation status of North-South gas pipeline was also presented to the CCoE. The committee directed the ministry to expedite the process of land acquisition for the project and also present to the committee the detailed project implementation schedule along with the transaction structure by February 2021.

The meeting was attended by Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibli Faraz, Adviser to the Prime Minister for Commerce, Textile, Industry, Production and Investment Abdul Razaq Dawood, SAPM on Petroleum Nadeem Babar, SAPM on Mineral Resources Shahzad Qasim and official of various divisions.