ISLAMABAD: The Senate standing committee on petroleum has been informed that the recent relaxation of sanctions by the United States and the European Union against Iran has not offered any benefit to Pakistan in case of its gas imports from Tehran.

The ministry of petroleum and natural resources has told the committee that the ministry of foreign affairs had reviewed the entire situation following the Iran-P5 nuclear deal from legal and diplomatic standpoints.

The Foreign Office has concluded that the softening of sanctions would not provide any relaxation or benefit to Pakistan if it imports gas from Iran.

Petroleum Secretary Abid Saeed said the FO believed that the US and EU would impose sanctions against Pakistan the day gas started flowing from Iran.

Mr Saeed said both Iran and Pakistan appreciated the situation and would meet later this week to review penalty clauses for failure to take gas, set new timelines and the way forward.

Petroleum Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi also confirmed before the committee that the implementation of the pipeline project faced difficulties because of European and American restrictions.

He said Iran had completed pipeline on its side of the border. The major problem was that the machinery and equipment required for laying gas line and installing compressions facilities were being manufactured by only two global companies which were not ready to work on the project because of sanctions, he said. The largest Chinese bank had also declined to invest in the project.

LNG IMPORT:

The committee expressed reservations over signing of a memorandum of understanding between the United Energy Group and the Sui Southern Gas Company for supply of liquefied natural gas without clearance and vetting by the previous PPP-led government.

The petroleum minister updated the committee on LNG import projects and said the construction of a port terminal was in progress, but a tender had not been issued yet for LNG supply.

He confirmed that LNG would not cost less than $17 per MMBTU when inducted into the gas system.

The additional gas will be sold under marginal cost plus basis because it would go to bulk consumers instead of applying weighted average price that was also applicable to domestic consumers.

The chairman of the committee, Mohammad Yousaf, expressed concern that the sale of LNG at $19-22 per MMBTU to consumers would open floodgates of inflation because its current price was $4 per MMBTU.

He said the previous government had signed the gas import agreement with Iran despite Western pressure.

Mr Yousaf suggested that the current PML-N government should also hold talks with Tehran and get its reservations removed.

The committee called for engagement with Iran to not only complete the pipeline but also to avoid penalties for Pakistan’s failure to buy natural gas under the agreement.

More From This Section

Negotiators will try to convince TTP to extend ceasefire: Ibrahim

Ibrahim said a number of concerns from the TTP's end had come forward, adding that these should be addressed.

Four mobile operators qualify for 3G, 4G auction

The bids of four mobile operators of Pakistan qualified for the auction of 3G and 4G licenses, PTA chairman said.

Balochistan situation has deteriorated, says BNP-M

Dr Jamaldini regretted that during the nine months of the PML-N govt, no change has been witnessed in the province.

PPO to be softened, PM assures Zardari

The opposition parties in the Senate, including the PPP, ANP and PML-Q, made it clear they will not let the bill pass.


Comments are closed.

Comments (4)

El Cid
January 7, 2014 11:40 am

Maiming two birds--Pakistan and Iran--with a single stone..!

Faiz
January 7, 2014 12:39 pm

Strange that GM and Siemens can decide our fate and other options we try is the massacre of Poor... I believe Pakistan will be no more a state with Poverty,, because Poor has to die to live peacefully... Pakistan is the country with the highest Uranium reserves... If we can’t use them at the time of need then we are cursed...Why don't we go for nuclear power generation projects which all developed countries are relying on.. France is fulfilling its 75% need from there.. And if we be able to produce surplus electricity then why to use CNG LNG and natural gas for household and transportation!

atif khan
January 7, 2014 12:49 pm

what sanctions, its our requirement not theirs. Rich man is sitting warm and cosy in his home, and asking us not to buy bread from the shop as the shop owner is having bad terms with the rich man.

Sajjad
January 7, 2014 5:40 pm

Darte ho iss liye to wo sanctions lagate hain... shame to be a Pakistani.

Explore: Indian elections 2014
Explore: Indian elections 2014
How much do you know about Indian Elections?
How much do you know about Indian Elections?
Poll
From The Newspaper
Tweets