ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) today said gas Companies continue to prefer interests of brokers over interests of consumers. 

“Gas distribution companies are reluctant to abide by the decisions of OGRA Have been taken in the interests of masses,” it said.

“Gas utilities have not accepted any decision of the regulator since years and have recently refused to accept the gas tariff announced by the Ogra,” said Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President PEW. He said that all the directives to fix issues like overbilling have been ditched in favour of shareholders and some brokers.

Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that insistence of the gas utilities to increase UFG (theft and losses) is nothing but effort to benefit shareholders at the cost of masses.

He said that law and order situation has always remained normal in Karak but gas worth one billion is stolen which is not possible without involvement of gas officials. “Similarly, he said, “honest consumers are made to pay for the gas theft in Balochistan and elsewhere which must be stopped.”

Distributors accept theft of Rs30 billion per annum while the situation on the ground is different which must be controlled. He said that ratio of UFG is one percent at present while it is over seven percent in Pakistan and bureaucracy is trying to push it to 14 percent.

Gas companies are frequently blamed for overcharging consumers which is illegal and unethical, he said.