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SITE Association and BMG express concerns over shortage of gas

SITE Association and BMG express concerns over shortage of gas (ANI News)

KARACHI: SITE Association and BMG leaders have expressed serious concerns over non-provision of gas to export and general industries of SITE area Karachi and have demanded the government to issue immediate instructions to provide gas to all industries as per the requirement to save them from disaster.

Chairman of BMG and Patron-in-Chief of SITE Association Zubair Motiwala, Vice Chairman BMG M. Jawed Bilwani, President SITE Association Abdul Rasheed, SVP Saud Mahmood, VP Muhammad Kamran Arbi, Chairman Energy Sub-Committee Saleem Parekh, and Immediate Past President Abdul Hadi were the people who demanded such serious concerns.

Moreover, electricity tariffs should also be reduced and rationalized so as to continue industrial production without interruption and to avert the cancellation of export orders by meeting export shipment dates.

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Chairman BMG and office bearers of SITE, while addressing a press conference at SITE Association of Industry mentioned that SITE industries are not getting gas as per requirement for many months. Industries often face the problem of gas pressure which normally remains between 1.0 to 1.5 pounds which is equivalent to no gas and industry cannot be run on such low gas pressure.

They added that in this connection, the federal government high up especially Energy Minister Hammad Azhar, Advisor Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood, and MD SSGC were kept informed but there was no development.

They stated that as per Article 158, Sindh has the 1st right on the gas produced in Sindh province. As such, the requirement of Sindh industries should be met first, and then, the gas should be provided to other provinces. The Sindh government should ensure the implementation of Article 158 of the constitution as the KPK government has successfully done it in their province.

On the matter of high electricity tariff, they said that the cost of production of industries, particularly SMEs have increased substantially and the government should seriously consider a reduction in electricity tariff. It is no justice to impose sales tax at 34 percent on small industries. On one hand, the government is shutting down captive power plants of industries while on the other hand, the electricity tariff is being increased. The government is neither providing gas for industrial production nor letting us generate our own electricity from gas. In this situation, industrialists are facing challenges to run their industries.

Zubair Motiwala said that government prefers domestic consumers whereas in the rest of the world, local and export industries are given priority as they are an economic lifeline. In Pakistan, industries are not the No.1 priority of the government. He questioned that if local and export industries are treated in such a manner, how industrialization can be promoted, how employment avenues will be generated, and how exports will be increased. It is unjustified to charge industrial consumers at a higher rate and provide subsidized gas to residential consumers.

He demanded the government to give first priority to Karachi industries for provision of gas which contributes more than 54 percent towards total exports of the country and provide employment to the largest number of people and is also the highest taxpayers.

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BMG leaders and SITE office bearers have suggested the government end domestic connection in rural & urban areas and shift to LPG in cities and biogas in other areas which will definitely help overcome the energy crisis. In addition, justified policy should be devised for the promotion of solar or electricity geysers instead of gas geysers.

Zubair Motiwala and SITE office-bearers have also demanded the Sindh government to further allocate funds of at least 3 billion rupees additionally in addition to the approved 1 billion rupees for the improvement of infrastructure and roads construction and repair in the SITE area. The progress of work is very slow because of the very slow release of funds. Sindh Government is urged to release approved funds and increase the total package to at least 4 billion rupees.

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