KARACHI - Economic weaknesses, rising circular debt and higher oil prices have made negative impact on oil consumption of the country, as a result of which, the oil consumption in the country posted a slight decline of 2.9 per cent, unveiled by the Oil Companies Advisory Committee (OCAC) data for 2MFY09. Total POL products volume (excluding non-energy) recorded 2.98mn tons in 2MFY09 against 3.07mn in 2MFY08. Local refineries provided 1.56mn tons, 52 per cent of total. Whereas remaining 48 per cent of the consumption was met through imports, average 55 per cent were imports for Furnace Oil (FO) and High Speed Diesel (HSD) in 2MFY09 against 52 per cent in 2MFY08. Except for HSD which showed paltry rise of 2 per cent, all products showed a declining trend during July-August 2008. Thus, during July-August 2008, total oil sales is down by 3 per cent to 3.0mn tons. Similarly, when compared August 2008 versus July 2008, oil sales is down 17 per cent to 1.3mn tons in August 2008.   The Black Oil products FO and Light Diesel Oil (LDO) consumption declined by 6.7 per cent on Year on Year basis with their combined volume standing at 1.24mn tons, which was central to the overall decline in growth during 2MFY09 (98 per cent contribution to the total fall). FO and LDO consumption fell by 6 per cent and 39 per cent YoY, respectively in 2MFY09 while their combined volume stood at 1.24mn tons in 2MFY09 , 42 per cent of total volume against 1.33mn tons, 47 per cent of total in 2MFY08. On the other hand, White Oil products contributed a meager fall of 0.1 per cent YoY with total volume of 1.74mn tons in 2MFY09. FO decline came amid its skyrocketing prices (126 per cent increase YoY standing at Rs61,852/ton) which aggravated Pepco (using coal as an alternate), Hubco, Kapco and other IPPs' cash positions (high generation cost and low reimbursement), forcing decline in FO consumption despite rising power shortages in the country. LDO decline was due to the rainy season observed, which rendered less demand for the product in agricultural activities. Similarly higher retail prices and higher CNG consumption led petrol (Mogas) sales to drop by 8 per cent on Month on Month basis (MoM) in August whereas cumulative sales dropped by 10 per cent during July-August 2008. However, we could see demand to revert back if petrol prices further come down by Rs10-15 per liter owing to declining international oil prices. At market level shares, the Pakistan State Oil (PSO) secured largest slice of 68.2 per cent of the market share in 2MFY09; however, declining by 186bps YoY due to posting volumetric decline of 5 YoY (30-month low). Shell stood with 14.3 per cent YoY with 105bps YoY improved share due to 5 per cent volumetric growth. while Attock Petroleum Limited (APL) shared 5.4 per cent of the market with a decline of 36bps YoY due to negative volumetric growth of 9 per cent YoY in 2MFY09.