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APBF urges consistent gas supply for higher industrial productivity.

KARACHI -- The All Pakistan Business Forum (APBF) on Tuesday expressed the need for ensuring consistent and abundant gas supply for the industrial and domestic sectors. Pakistan's total gas production is around 4 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd), while the national demand stands at 6 bcfd, whereby the nation has been suffering due to gas-shortages and curtailment of gas-supplies.

The APBF also appreciated the measures being taken by the government to reduce the overall energy crisis in the country, which is causing heavy losses to the economy and industrial productivity - directly and indirectly, while it also disrupts the people's day to day lives.

Pakistan's energy landscape is being transformed through various trans-national projects and reforms. The TAPI (Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan & India) Gas Pipeline project is being built to carry 33 billion cubic meters of gas, annually. A 15-year agreement worth $16 Billion has been signed with the Qatar government, to import nearly 3.75 million tons of low-cost, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) per year. Serious deliberations are also underway to finalize the "Iran-Pakistan Pipeline" project, with the capacity to carry 750 mmcfd of Gas. These large-scale projects are aimed at ensuring the availability of cheap and abundant energy in Pakistan.

The President of APBF, Ibrahim Qureshi stated that, "Governments, around the world, have the responsibility to protect and favor their essential indigenous industries, to create more employment opportunities and reduce their import expenditure. Due to the continuing gas-shortages in the country, the government should consider realigning its strategy to further rationalize the distribution of Gas - which is the most affordable indigenous fossil-fuel available in Pakistan. This will also enable us to meet the needs of the most essential sectors, on priority, to maximize industrial and agricultural output, for the sustainability of our future generations."

In 2014, the Economic Survey of Pakistan revealed that the fertilizer sector consumed almost 19% of the country's annual gas supply. Fertilizer is one of the most essential input for agricultural - that plays a vital role in the economic stability of Pakistan. The fertilizer manufacturers use Gas as a basic raw material to produce Urea Prills.

They are not burning gas solely to operate their factories. Therefore, giving gas-subsidy to the fertilizer industry is worth every penny, because this sector is making optimal use of natural gas, while prudently passing on the gas-subsidy advantage to the common farmers, in shape of price-markdown.

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Publication:Balochistan Times (Baluchistan Province, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Aug 10, 2016
Words:445
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