Islamabad        -           Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) has categorically rejected the gas companies demand for additional Unaccounted for Gas (UFG) allowance over and above the Ogra’s approved limit saying that the regulator cannot allow the transfer of additional burden of theft and losses to the gas consumers. Ogra has set the maximum limit for the UFG and will not allow the transfer of burden of over and above the permitted UFG to the gas consumers, OGRA Chairman, Uzma Adil said to the National Assembly standing Committee on Petroleum. Why the gas consumers should bear the burden of gas theft and losses, she questioned? The standing committee meeting which was chaired by Imran Khattak has discussed the SNGPL gas schemes and the improvement of SSGCL gas supply to the consumers. Khwaja Sheeraz Mahmood questioned that why SNGPL has stopped working on the gas schemes initiated by the previous government.

Managing Director SNGPL told the committee that with the available funds the schemes have been partially completed. He said that SNGPL has 69000 consumers and with the expansion of network the losses are also increasing which is affecting the company revenues. Ogra on the other side made it clear that the gas companies are permitted UFG within the range of 7.6 percent and will never allow the increase UFG to be transferred to the gas consumers. Officials of petroleum division informed the committee that they are negotiating the issue of funds for the gas schemes with Cabinet division and they are hopeful to get fund released for the schemes. Barjees Tahir said that in his constituency Rs33 million were allocated for gas schemes but it was lapsed.”I feel ashamed that the schemes were not completed and I will go to court over not completion of these schemes,” he said. Chaudhry Amir Sultan Cheema said that pace of work on the SNGPL schemes is very slow.

The committee was informed that SNGPL has requested Ogra for the approval of funds for developmental work. Ogra Chairperson however said that, authority has not received any revised application from SNGPL for next fiscal revenue requirement. She said that Ogra cannot approve financial expenditure on the basis of an application as the regulator has a specific procedure for authorizing estimated revenue requirements. She said that it is the SNGPL ill planning that they had not incorporated the demands for funds for transmission projects in their revenue requirements for  2019-20.Now they are going to ask for additional funds for gas transmission projects in their review petition for 2019-20. Shazia Mari asked the official of Directorate General Gas Petroleum division that how much gas Sindh is producing and how much it is utilizing? Director General Gas informed that last year Sindh produced 51 percent of gas while utilized 40 percent of it.

 

 Members of the committee complained that SSGCL MD is not receiving their phone calls and requested that he should be summoned in the next meeting of the committee.