A FEW days back reports showed that petrol consumption in the country was most likely to surpass the staggering figure of 2.6 million tons during the financial year 2011-12, for which the final figures would be available after some days, as compared to 2.28 million tons in 2010-11.
The reports said that during the first 11 months of 2011-12 i.e. July 2011 to May 2012, the petrol consumption in the country was 2.5 million tons. Out of this, the local refineries had produced only 1.1 million tons while the rest of the demand was met through import.
The fact that more than half of our petrol requirement is imported through payment in foreign exchange, which the country earns through exports and home remittances of Pakistani expatriates mainly, is certainly quite an alarming situation.
This surely calls for boosting petrol exploration and production and also for taking some effective fuel-saving measures on a priority basis, in the public and private sectors. Besides that, there is a dire need for avoiding wasteful consumption in unproductive manner which apparently is very high due to various reasons.
For fuel-saving measures, the innovative technological developments and advancements could be quite helpful, both in the public and private sectors.
Some fuel-saving equipment, based on foreign technology and duly tested by some reputed international organisations, are available which could be quite helpful in effecting fuel saving without compromising on the mileage one has to undertake.Manufacturers and importers of one such gadget, which is reported to be so small that it could easily be plugged into the lighter socket of a vehicle, claim that it saves petrol consumption by as much as 25 per cent, plus some other productive and positive benefits.
If such fuel-saving equipment is used on a large scale in public and private sectors, much petrol could be saved, bringing down the oil import bill appreciably.
Such fuel-saving gadgets need due consideration and a fair try in the larger national interest. The earlier it is done, the richer would be the dividends, on the whole, for the nation and the country. It is needed the most in a country like ours which is facing a acute financial crunch.
MASROOR AHMAD Lahore