ISLAMABAD   -  The gas utility companies have added 678,872 new consumers to their network during FY 2017-18 which has shown an increase of more than 100 percent over the entire gas connections granted in the previous five years. Even with more than 100 percent increase in new gas connections the share of Balochistan has been remained only 2 percent of the entire country, said OGRA state of the industry report 2017-18.

In five years from 2012-13 both the gas utilities companies added only 300000 gas connections, however during the last year of the PML(N) tenure the number of connections were increased by more than 100 percent to 678,872 , said the report. Regarding the demand supply gap, the report said that the gap during FY 2017-18 was 1,447 MMCFD, this gap is expected to rise to 3,720 MMCFD by FY 2019-20.

The province wise gas consumption reveals that Punjab share was the highest with 50 percent, followed by Sindh 39 percent, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 9 percent and Balochistan 2 percent during the year under review, said the report. Natural gas supplies during the year were 4,357 MMCFD. Sindh supplied 50 percent to the total gas supplies, whereas Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Punjab supplied 12, 11 and 4 percent respectively. The remaining 23 percent of gas was imported in the form LNG. Due to rising demand from various sectors particularly power, domestic, fertilizer, captive power and industry the supplies are not sufficient enough to cater this demand.

The gas utility companies expanded transmission and distribution network to cater for consumer demand for natural gas. SNGPL and SSGCL extended their transmission network by 342 Km and 57 Km and added 11,693 Km and 689 Km in their distribution network respectively during fiscal year 2017-18. The gas utility companies have added 678,872 new consumers to their network during FY 2017-18. The total gas consumers were more than 9.2 million by the end of FY 2017-18. There were 6.3 million and 2.9 million consumers on SNGPL and SSGCL network respectively.

Power sector was the main consumer of natural gas during FY 2017-18, consuming 37 percent followed by domestic sector 20 percent, fertilizer 17 percent, captive power 10 percent, industrial sector 9 percent, transport 5 percent, and commercial sector having 2 percent share.  On the oil sector, the report said that the consumption of petroleum products during FY 2017-18 decreased to 24.6 million tons (including energy and non-energy) as compared to 26.0 million tons of the last year showing a decline of 5.3 percent. The negative growth came from power sector which witnessed a decline in Fuel Oil (FO) consumption to 23 percent due to alternate fuel availability (i.e. LNG) in the said sector.

Moreover, kerosene and aviation fuels also observed minor decrease in consumption by around 5.5 and 1 percent respectively. Whereas a significant growth of 11.5 percent in Motor Spirit (MS) consumption was observed in FY 2017-18 as compared to previous year. The aforesaid increase may be attributed to increased demand in transport sector probably due to growing number of vehicles especially motor bikes in the last few years. During FY 2017-18, contrary to Motor Spirit (MS), High Speed Diesel (HSD) remained steady with negligible growth of 0.4 percent.

The market share of Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) witnessed a shift in the ranking of main players as compared to previous year. PSO was the leading player with the share of around 50 percent loosing almost 5 percent of its market share to other competitors compared to last year. Shell also shed its market share by 2 percent from 9 to 7 percent. The main beneficiary was Hascol increasing its market share from 8 percent to 12 percent and APL slightly improved its share from 8 to 9 percent during the year under review. After the merger of Total Parco Marketing Limited (TPML) into Total Parco Pakistan Limited (TPPL), TPPL has expanded its share from 4 percent to around 9 percent in total sale of energy products.

During FY 2017-18, the production of refineries witnessed a growth of 13 percent as compared to last year. The production remained at 13.63 million tons (energy & non-energy products) as compared to 12.07 million tons in FY 2016-17. Byco’s production showed a significant growth of 113.5% due to operation of 2nd oil refinery. As usual, PARCO had the major share in production at 33 percent followed by BPPL with 19 percent and National Refinery Limited (NRL) share remained at 17 percent of the total production. The demand for HSD, MS and FO was mostly met through imports as domestic production was not enough to meet the country’s requirement. Around 71 percent of MS, 42 percent of High Speed Diesel (HSD) and 56 percent of FO demand was met through import of finished POL products.

Regarding LPG the report said that LPG accounts for about 1.3% of the total primary energy supply in the country. This low share of LPG in the total energy mix is mainly due to supply constraints and the higher price of LPG in relation to competing fuels like natural gas and wood etc. The current size of LPG market is around 1,280,550 MT/annum. LPG consumption has increased by 5.88 % compared to last fiscal years. LPG consumption during FY 2017-18 stood at around 3,508 tons per day.