Islamabad           -        As the petrol shortage persists across the country, the government constituted a committee to monitor verify stock availability, and identification of black marketing, and hoarding by OMCs.

The committee to be chaired by DG Oil, will consist the representatives of FIA, OGRA, PSO, HDIP, District Administration, said a notification issued by the government.

The decision was taken in a video conference held here to address the issues arising out of scarcity of POL products in the country. The meeting was chaired by the Federal Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan. Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Petroleum, Nadeem Babar and Secretary Petroleum Mian Asad Hayaud Din also attended the meeting. Other stakeholders such as OGRA and OMCs also participated in the video conference to mitigate demand supply challenges.

The meeting was informed that as of June 7, there is a petrol stock of 214,536 MTs available in the country which was enough for 10 days.

The meeting decided to constitute a committee under supervision of DG Oil to verify stock availability, and identification of black marketing, and hoarding by OMCs.

Other members of the committee will include the representatives of FIA, OGRA, PSO, HDIP, and District Administration. The committee will visit the depots/installations/retails outlets of OMCs and refineries to monitor supply of petroleum products to the petrol pumps and availability to General public.

If any OMC is found to be hoarding petroleum products then the committee would submit its findings to the relevant authority for appropriate action which may lead to cancellation of their market license.

Interestingly the committee consisted of the representatives of the departments or organisations that are being blamed for the oil shortage, an expert related to Oil Industry told The Nation. Except FIA which is neutral all the other departments are part of the crises or have a role in it, he said.

One thing is clear that the government still seems to be far away from taking any action against the OMCs/dealers involved in the oil shortage as major part of the country reeling petrol crises, he added.

The meeting further decided that OMCs shall not be allowed to ration supplies of petroleum products to retail outlets. Government will take strict action against the dealers involved in overcharging and hoarding. 

OMCs will not be allowed to cancel or defer their planned cargoes for June 2020. Refineries are directed to produce their committed volume of petroleum products. 

OMCs to move Mogas from Karachi ports to main consumption centres immediately. In this regard, a committee has also formulated to inspect OMCs installations/depots to verify their stocks, physically.

License of OMC(s) will be cancelled by the regulator if anyone found negligent. OMCs to ensure additional supplies to Malakand, Faisalabad and Hyderabad Divisions.

OCAC is asked to issue Press Statement indicating that there are sufficient stocks of petrol present in the country and all import of POL is lined up to meet  demand.

OGRA may deploy vigilance teams in the field to verify available stocks of OMC’s depot and retail outlets.  Moreover, it was stressed that additional production by refineries as well as planned imports be on schedule to meet the monthly needs.

Federal Minister expressed his deep concern over the petrol shortage across the country due to artificial shortage by some OMCs and/or their dealers for profit maximization that had resulted in shortages/ dry outs  having an adverse impact on the lives of the general public.