KARACHI - Pakistan State Oil (PSO) and Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (PNSC), the nation’s flagship oil marketing and shipping companies respectively, have solidified their partnership by signing a contract of affreightment (COA) on Friday at the PNSC building, says a Press release. The accord was signed between Naeem Yahya Mir, CEO & MD-PSO, and Vice Admiral Saleem Ahmed Meenai, Chairman-PNSC. Also present at the occasion were PSO’s Naved Alam Zubairi, SGM Projects; Dr Nazir A Zaidi, SGM-International Marketing; along with PNSC’s Executive Directors Brig Rashid Siddiqi, Capt Aftabuddin Siddiqi, Imtiaz Cassum Agboatwala, Cdre Syed Muhammad Obaidullah and Zaheer Babar Qureshi. The agreement which is valid for one year and renewable on an annual basis will enable PSO to transport upto 3 million metric tonnes of Furnace Oil via PNSC vessels from Middle East to Pakistan’s shores. A successful test shipment of 71,500 MTs of Furnace Oil has already been brought into Pakistan through a PNSC vessel.Through this agreement, the biggest national oil marketing company shall minimize dependence on foreign supply lines and shall also reduce its transportation costs by paying in Pak Rupees translating into savings worth Rs. 2.5 billion per annum to the national exchequer. This agreement shall also strengthen the flagship carrier’s business and will help them further consolidate their fleet of vessels.