CNG stations in Sindh closed KARACHI: The All-Pakistan CNG Association has announced closure of all CNG stations across Sindh for an indefinite period in protest against alleged high-handedness and threats hurled by a senior officer of the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra).
The decision was announced on Wednesday by the chairman of the association’s Sindh chapter, Shabbir Sulemanjee, after key stakeholders of the CNG sector met Ogra’s deputy director for Karachi, Altaf Shah.
A delegation of the All-Pakistan CNG Association-Sindh, CNG Dealers Association, CNG Owners Association and Sindh CNG Association — led by Mr Sulemanjee, Abdul Sami Khan, Malik Khuda Bux and Abdul Rafi Abbasi — had met Mr Shah to share their concerns over what they called “consistent and continuous violation of rules by Ogra” regarding determination of retail prices of the fuel for Sindh.
According to Mr Sulemanjee, Mr Shah, instead of resolving the issues, threatened the delegation that stern action would be taken against CNG stations in case they did not reverse their decision to sell the commodity by the litre.
All-Pakistan CNG Association takes the step against alleged threats from a senior Ogra officer
He said the delegation’s members tried to explain to the Ogra official that determination of prices through the Ogra ordinance had lapsed, and that the new prices had been fixed as per the Compressed Natural Gas (Marketing and Production) Rules, 1992, under the Mines and Oil Fields and Mineral Development Act 1948, which did not give any authority to Ogra to determine the retail prices.
The delegation alleged that Ogra had violated the order of the Islamabad High Court regarding increase in the GCV values which had resulted in an exorbitant increase in gas prices.
They also complained that Ogra had resorted to discrimination in its price notification by allowing the stations in Region-1 (with 1,040 GCV) to sell CNG at Rs75.82 per kg and those in Region–2 (with 950 GCV) at Rs67.5 per kg.
The delegation told Mr Shah that the CNG association had filed a petition before the Senate where the concerns of the sector’s stakeholders had been duly accepted by the Ogra officials.
The summary of the Senate report had directed Ogra to resolve the issues of pricing within two months, but more than six months had passed without Ogra complying with the pricing mechanism formulated as per the relevant laws and rules and regulations, they said.
They said they had to meet the minister for petroleum and natural resources in Islamabad, who understood their legitimate grievances and allowed the stations in Sindh to sell CNG by the litre like Punjab and Rs48.2 per litre was fixed for Sindh according to Ogra’s pricing formula.
CNG stations in Punjab sell the fuel at a rate of Rs48.2 per litre with no GIDC levied and sales tax charged at five per cent only, whereas CNG stations in Sindh are being charged Rs20 per kilogram in terms of GIDC and sales tax.