LAHORE- Adviser to Prime Minister on Petroleum Dr Asim Hussain on Tuesday said that the government is going to open up the formula for the calculation prices of petroleum products before the public on Thursday (tomorrow). I have asked OGRA (Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority) to make public the formula of the calculation of the prices of petroleum products, the Advisor said, adding, the petroleum development levy is now a fixed tax. He further claimed that the prices of petroleum products would go down on August 1, 2009, as the present government has fixed the margins of Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs), who had made huge profits in the past. He was speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Tuesday. LCCI President Mian Muzaffar Ali, Senior Minister Punjab Raja Riaz Ahmad, Finance Minister Punjab Tanvir Ashraf Kaira and former LCCI President Mian Misbahur Rehman also spoke on the occasion. The Adviser said that the OGRA had been directed to make public the oil companies price-fixation formula on Thursday (tomorrow) that would help the people to understand things in transparent manner. After this, he said, the prices of petroleum products would linked to the international prices. When the oil prices will fall in the international market, the fuel prices would also go down in the local market, he added. He said that the Petroleum Levy is a fixed tax is far less as compared to other countries across the world. Dr Asim said that the government has decided to ensure supply of E10 gasoline at 90 more petrol pumps all over the country where ethanol blended petrol called E10 gasoline would be available, which is not only cheaper but also environment-friendly. He said that the crisis of oil, gas and water could further aggravate in coming years as the consumption was fast increasing with every passing day. Over the issue of availability of gas, he said that the industry is on the priority list of the government but unfortunately Pakistan is one of the countries where line losses are on the top with 8 to 9 per cent of total consumption. TheSNGPL alone is facing 140 mmcf line losses, which is highest in the world, he said, adding, we will have to control such losses. About the gas shortage, he said, the country last year faced 650 mmcf shortage and 'we are expecting this shortage would go up to 800 to 850 mmcf as there are 2000 CNG stations in Punjab province while Sindh province has no less than 450. He made it clear that the shortage is not management problem. The dilemma is much serious and we should be very careful in energy preservation, he added. He said that this government is not here to harm the industry. He said that the industry would be given top priority in gas supply formula during the summer season. He also claimed that they were expecting foreign investment to the tune of $10 to 15b in the energy sector during the next five years. He said that the future of energy is in the gas and each country needed energy security. LCCI President Mian Muzaffar Ali stressed the need for cutting down the margin of OMCs; saying that the people are in trouble due to high prices of petroleum products. He said due to governmental patronage the CNG related industry has emerged as a potential source of employment and business activity during the last few years. Many related sectors have been developed, some 1 to 1.5 lac CNG rickshaws are plying on the roads, a large number of vehicles have been converted to CNG, now CNG busses have also been introduced in Lahore. A whole CNG supporting vending industry has come up. Any policy against the interest of CNG Industry will have effect on a large segment of the Society, the investment in the CNG business will be diverted off and it will lead to mass scale unemployment and lose of foreign exchange and business activity in the country. He said that in a meeting with the representative of CNG association it was agreed to fix the petrol to CNG price ratio at 40 to 60 and to review the CNG price on quarterly basis, but due to unknown reasons the price of CNG has not been reduced even in this July, when tariff for other industries has been revised. We strongly urge to rationalize the CNG tariff structure in accordance with the agreement. Use of Natural Gas in the knitwear and Garment industry is at a very limited scale but if gas supply is stopped the whole industry stops, which cause unemployment and reduction in production for the export oriented industry. He said the high price of Oil and Petroleum is adding to the cost of doing business and making products less competitive for the international markets. The PDL is a huge burden on the oil consumers as General Sales Tax is already collected on sales of Petroleum products. He urged the Adviser to open more blocks for exploration of oil, gas and other valuable minerals.