ISLAMABAD-The Senate Standing Committee on Petroleum on Friday noted that Iranian smuggled petrol is being sold in Balochistan.

The Senate Standing Committee on Petroleum, which met with Senator Mohsin Aziz in the chair, discussed public petition submitted by the women of Juman Rajper, Taluka District Naushero Feroz regarding supply of gas to their village, briefings of advantages of Euro 5 fuel and closure of PSO depot in Kohat, details of new and ongoing projects of PSDP of Petroleum Division and present status of recommendations of meetings held on 20 January, 2020 regarding laying of 19km main line from Lower Tope to Lora via Bansra. The case of regularization of engineers from Balochistan working at OGDCL was discussed in-camera. 

Senator Mir Kabeer said that Iranian smuggled petrol is being sold in Balochistan and that was endorsed by the members of the committee. 

While considering the public petition submitted by the women of Juman Rajper, Taluka District Naushero Feroz regarding supply of gas to their village, the Committee was informed that a survey had been conducted for project feasibility. The main findings were that supply would require a 1400 km extension to reach the village. Distribution mains entail 2000km. The project cost is Rs 9040 million. Since the per customer cost of the above scheme works out to be Rs 114, 430, which exceeds the maximum average cost per customer criterion of Rs 54000 approved by the Government of Pakistan for Sindh. The scheme could be considered for implementation if the federal/provincial governments and SNGPL would invest in cost criteria of Rs 4774 million in accordance with Natural Gas Allocation and Management Policy 2005. 

While being briefed about the advantages of Euro 5 fuel and its comparison to other fuel types, the Committee was informed that the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE) considered the proposal for import of Euro-V diesel/petrol; in its meeting held on 4th June, 2020. It was decided that all imports of petrol/diesel shall conform to Euro-V specifications. The Committee was informed that currently imports of petrol with Euro-V specifications have begun, whereas diesel imports will commence from January, 2021. 

Discussing details of the closure of PSO depot in Kohat, the Committee was informed that approximately Rs 100 million would be required for its revamping and cannot begin without ECC approval. The Committee was informed that the oil depot was closed in 2008 and PSO needs the Ogra’s permission to reopen it. Vice Chairman Ogra, Noor-ul-Haq said that the PSO doesn’t require permission from Ogra as the permission will be granted by the federal government. Secretary Petroleum Division said that Ogra places the responsibility of everything on the federal government. In petrol crises also Ogra had done the same thing and placed the entire responsibility on the Petroleum Division, he added.   

About the progress on the recommendation of the Committee for provision of gas to a number of areas in Hazara Division in pursuance of the resolution of Senator M. Javed Abbasi passed by the House, the committee was informed that the total cost of the project is Rs 529.446 million in which the government has to share the cost. In this connection a letter has been written to the Petroleum Division for the release of funds. The Secretary informed that the case will be processed and after approval of the Minister for Petroleum, the case will be placed before the Cabinet Committee on gas development schemes. The Committee directed to expedite the case.