Centre approves Rs1bn package for gas pipelines in Quetta

Published December 3, 2020
Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Qasim Khan Suri addressing the press conference.—APP
Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Qasim Khan Suri addressing the press conference.—APP

QUETTA: National Assembly’s Deputy Speaker Qasim Khan Suri has announced that the federal government has approved a package of Rs1 billion for replacement of 40-year-old gas pipelines in Quetta to resolve the issue of low-gas pressure.

Under the package, the federal government would lay 57-kilometre-long gas pipelines in Quetta and surrounding areas in less than a year to resolve the gas pressure issue, said Mr Suri while speaking at a press conference along with Parliamentary Secretary for Quetta Development Authority and Urban Development Mobin Ahmed Khilji, and Sui Southern Gas Company’s (SSGC) General Manager Madani Siddique here on Wednesday.

“The replacement of the old gas pipelines would be completed by September 2021,” he said, adding that the existing pipelines had been laid in 1980. They could not cater to the gas requirements and pressure of the present day, he said.

NA deputy speaker says existing pipelines will be replaced by September 2021

The NA deputy secretary said that the issue of gas supply would be resolved permanently in Quetta and other areas with the completion of the project.

He said that work on the pipeline project would be launched soon. He explained that 16-, 12-, 8- and 6-inch-diameter pipelines would be laid under the project.

He disclosed that gas reserves in the country were depleting with the passage of time and presently 26 per cent people were getting natural gas while 74pc people were using LPG. “Even the residence of Prime Minister Imran Khan has LPG gas,” he said, adding that if new gas reserves were not discovered in the country, then only LPG gas would be available for use.

While referring to economic policies of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government, Mr Suri said that for the first time in the history of the country the government was moving in the right direction and as a result of Imran Khan’s policies cement sale had increased and the current account deficit had been reduced and government has not taken any loan since June.

In his recent visit to Turbat, Prime Minister Khan announced a development package of Rs600 billion for the nine districts of southern Balochistan as these areas remained less developed due to various reasons. He said development package would also be announced for northern Balochistan and soon Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar would visit the northern districts of the province in this regard.

Mr Suri said the government had also decided to launch the construction of dual-carriage highways on Chaman-Quetta-Karachi and Quetta-Zhob routes under the China-Pakistan Economic Corri-dor project.

He said that the federal government had implemented projects worth Rs75 billion in Balochistan. He said the construction of a new Gwadar international airport was under way while work for the expansion of Turbat airport would get under way soon.

Published in Dawn, December 3rd, 2020

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