Islamabad - The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) Thursday approved Network Code submitted by the Sui Companies (Transporters) which will provide market access to third-party for gas supply to the customers.

According the Ogra Spokesman, pursuance to Rule 11 of Ogra Gas (Third Party Access) Rules 2018, the regulator has approved Network Code submitted by the Sui Companies (Transporters) with the objective of establishing a uniform contractual (operational) framework for the third-party access arrangements in the country and the use of gas pipeline transportation systems.

According the spokesman this will promote the development of a competitive gas market by applying uniform principles to the relevant parties; ensure fair, transparent and non-discriminatory practices in all transactions concerning the use of the gas pipeline transportation systems; prevent abuse of dominance and any potential anti-competitive conduct; and ensure the safe and reliable supply of gas, and integrity of the gas pipeline transportation system.

The Network Code is the common set of standard conditions governing access arrangement between the following parties (transporters and shippers): -(a)     Gas transmission licensees; (b)      Gas distribution licensees; (c)         Gas sale; and (d)  Connected system operators.

It is expected that with opening up of the country’s gas market to third parties will promote import of liquefied natural gas and facilitate growth in the natural gas sector of the country. TPA regime will address the energy shortfall of the country, secure energy supplies for the growing domestic demand and promote economic growth by enhancing competition in the gas market.

In the backdrop of Gas Sector Reforms, OGRA has reviewed the Third Party Access Rules and divided them into two parts i.e. (i) Rules / Guidelines (ii) Network Codes. After seeking comments of stakeholders and holding Stakeholders’ Consultative Sessions in all provinces as well as in the Federal Capital, OGRA Gas (Third Party Access) Rules 2018, were notified in Gazette of Pakistan on 12-06-2018 after approval of Government of Pakistan.

An official of OGRA told The Nation that now the utilities companies cannot say refuse to the third party for carrying their gas in the pipelines. Under one condition the Sui companies can refuse to carry the gas if they don’t have space in their pipelines, the source added. Even then OGRA will evaluate the claim of the Sui companies regarding space and will decide about the matter. The third party will pay the gas transportation fee to the Sui gas companies as per the rate determined by the OGRA.