ISLAMABAD - First time in the history of Pakistan, Ogra is set to introduce Natural Gas Regulated Third Party Access Rules, 2011, already sent to the stakeholders for their comments, in a bid to ensure transparent supply of LNG to meet the growing energy demands of the country. These rules may be called Ogra Natural Gas Regulated Third Party Access Rules, 2011 shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette. The rules have been proposed to ensure the third party access to the imported LNG to be injected in the distribution system of both utilities Sui Northern Gas Company Lmited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL) in a bid the meet the escalating demands of domestic as well as commercial consumers particularly power sector, sources privy to the development informed, adding, that these rules would also ensure the smooth and continuous supply as well as utilisation of Re-gasified Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG) by the end consumer. Sources further informed that grievances should be settled mutually as per the provision of access arrangement between the parties. However in case of non-resolution of the grievance, the parties may appoint an arbitrator(s) for its resolution under the Arbitration Act 1940 as modified from time to time whose decision shall be final and binding on the parties, sources said. It was also learnt that these rules were also sent to the Establishment Division and Cabinet Division for comments and for further process at their end. However, Mansoor Muzaffar Member Gas (Ogra) has said that very limited number of comments received so far from a large number of stakeholders. According to these rules, it was proposed that gas accounting should be on daily basis both by the shipper and the transporters while gas reconciliation, billing, penalty and their settlement shall be addressed in accordance with the access arrangement between the parties. Either party may install check meters at requisite points with a precondition so as not to interfere with the measurement equipment installed by concerned entity for custody transfer purpose. In order to secure continuous flow of gas in the system imbalances will be settled within two days between the connected system operators and the transporters as per inter-connection and operation arrangements, proposed rules say, adding, Transporters shall be relieved of obligation under the access arrangements in the case of constraints for a reasonable period of time as mutually agreed between respective shipper and transporters. Transporters shall publish a standardised connection agreement as part of access arrangements for the requests for new exit point, rules read. Quantum of SUG (System Use Gas) and LP (Line Pack) and TL (Transportation Losses) (calculated at maximum allowable operating pressure of the pipeline) shall be specified the access arrangement while shipper shall be obligated to provide the gas required by transporters for SUG, LP and TL free of cost in proportion to their contracted capacity subject to the terms of access arrangement. At the termination of the access arrangement, recoverable volume equivalent to the related LP will be delivered to the shippers customer or compensated as per agreed cost. Similarly no transportation charges shall be payable by shipper respecting any quantity of SUG, LP and TL under the Rule. However, at the termination of the access arrangement if the LP is delivered to shippers customer the transportation charges shall apply accordingly, proposed rules say. Additionally, the transporter is required to draw up, inform or place on its website a maintenance plan for a defined period identifying those entry and exit points where gas flow may be restricted buy maintenance works, the extent of the restrictions and when they will occur. The transporter will endeavour to prepare the plan so as to minimize disruption to affected parties and can request information from shippers on their intended entry and exit flows. Dates within the plan can be adjusted on 30 days notice to affected shippers but the transporter must then adhere to the plan as far as reasonably practicable. The planned maintenance period shall not exceed 20 days on annual basis or as per mutual agreement between transporter and shipper. Sources said it was further suggested in the proposed rulers that in order to encourage a level playing field and market development it is important that tariffs for access to and use of transportation system should be as transparent and still non-discriminatory, as possible. Moreover, according to the proposed rules, the transporter shall submit the transportation tariff application to the Authority for approval along with the prescribed fee under these Rules. The 80 percent income earned on account of transportation charges will form part of revenue requirement of transporter determined under section 8 of Ogra Ordinance, 2002. The remaining 20 per cent income will be treated as non-operating income for the respective utility. Transportation volumes under the third aprt access regime shall not form part of UFG (Unaccounted for Gas) calculations for revenue requirement purposes. For year 1 only starting from the first RLNG (Re-gasified Liquefied Natural Gas Natural) transportation from the regulated network, the transported volumes will be allowed in UFG calculations that will cater for initial billing/metering/commingling related problems, likely to be only initially incurred by the gas utilities. The transporter is responsible for physical balance of its gas transportation system by maintaining the required pressure for all segments of the system. The shipper is responsible for balancing his deliveries at the entry points and daily off-takes from the exit points. If the gas pipeline transportation system capacity has been utilized by the shipper without permission of the transporter over and above the contracted capacity, the shipper shall pay transportation charges for unauthorised over run volumes and shall also be penalized as agreed in access arrangements for such unauthorised overrun. Determination of imbalance quantity between the transporter and the shipper shall be done on daily basis for each gas day. Cash outs between respective parties shall be realized on monthly basis or as agreed under Access Arrangement for the accumulated imbalances throughout the month by taking the relevant 'Balancing Gas Price as basis. The account receivable party shall be paid balancing gas price for imbalance gas quantity at weighted average gas purchase price of the transporter. It shall be the responsibility of the shipper to cure imbalances caused in transporters pipeline system on day-to-day basis. In case, the shipper is unable to cure such imbalances then the transporter shall have the right to adjust daily nomination to mitigate such imbalances to ensure safety and integrity of pipeline system. War declared or undeclared, threat of war, terrorist act, riot, civil commotion, public demonstration, sabotage, rupture, act of vandalism, act of God, strike, lockout or other industrial disturbance, explosion, fault or failure of plant, equipment or other installation which the affected party could not prevent or overcome by the exercise of the degree of skill, diligence, prudence and foresight which would reasonably and ordinarily be expected from a skilled and experienced operator engaged in the same kind of undertaking under the same circumstances, governmental restraint or coming into force of any legal requirement, diversion of such quantity of natural gas delivered to transporter by shipper to another buyer of gas of transporter on the directives of the federal government. However, inability, financial hardship or the inability of a party to make a profit or receive a satisfactory rate of return from its operations or changes in market conditions including changes that directly or indirectly affect the demand for or price of natural gas such a loss of customers or loss of market share. Sources said that following any occurrence of Force Majeure, the affected party shall as soon as reasonably practicable but in any event within 48 hours notify each of the other party of the occurrence and nature of the Force Majeure. But in any event within 72 hours notify each of the other party the expected duration of Force Majeure. Moreover, shipper shall on a period of at least. Shipper shall on a basis of at least 60 days provide nomination of quantities that it wish to transport through the pipeline in line with the provision under rules. Similarly, transporter shall schedule the quantities of gas for transportation based on the nomination received while in the scenario where the total nomination exceed available capacity on a day the transporter shall schedule the firm quantities first and then the interruptible quantities and during the constraint period, the transporter shall provide the details of scheduled quantities on a daily basis in a transparent manner to all the shippers. At each entry point, there shall be measurement equipment necessary to measure on a continuous basis the quantity of gas flown, pressure and temperature. Either at the entry point or in the a homogenous area (AHA) before the entry point, there shall be equipments to measure gas composition, heating value, H2S content, water, Hydrocarbon Dew Point on continuous basis. For the exit point, the network is divided into AHAs and the quality is continuously measured by gas chromatograph (GC) at each AHA. Measurement equipments to measure throughout the day, the volume of gas flown, pressure & temperature are installed at the exit point.