Subsidy on gas to Fertilizer manufactures will flourish farming sector: APBF

Farming

LAHORE: To make industrial and manufacturing operations feasible, All Pakistan Business Forum (APBF) urged government to ensure uninterrupted and sufficient gas supply to industrial and domestic sectors on Wednesday.

The total gas production of the country is around four billion cubic feet per day while its national demand stands at six billion, over two billion cubic feet higher than the production per day causing gap between supply-demand of the commodity, the APBF said in a statement.

However, it appreciated the measures taken by the government to counter the countrywide overall energy crisis which was causing heavy losses to the economy and industrial productivity on routine basis.

APBF President Ibrahim Qureshi said, “It is the very responsibility of a government around the globe to protect and uphold their essential indigenous industries to generate more employment opportunities and reduce import expenditures.”

He further said that natural gas is the most affordable indigenous fossil fuel available in Pakistan. The government must ensure its accessibility which would ultimately enable the masses including manufactures to meet the needs.

In light of the Economic Survey of Pakistan’s Data in 2014, he said that it revealed the fertilizer sector consumed almost 19% of the country’s annual gas supply. The fertilizer manufacturers use gas as a basic raw material to produce urea pills.

While giving a notion of gas subsidy to fertilizer industry, he was on opinion that the industry was utilizing natural gas at optimal level and would prudently pass on the gas-subsidy advantage to the common farmers in form of price markdown of domestic agriculture products.

It is pertinent to mention here that Pakistan’s energy landscape is being transformed through various trans-national projects and reforms. The TAPI (Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India) Gas Pipeline project is being built to carry 33 billion cubic meters of gas, annually. A 15-year agreement worth $16 billion has been signed with the Qatar government to import nearly 3.75 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per year.

Deliberations are also underway to finalise the Iran-Pakistan Pipeline project in collaboration of China, with the capacity to carry 750 MMCFD of gas. These large-scale projects are aimed at ensuring the availability of cheap and abundant energy in Pakistan.

Source: Online

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