Agreement signed for Gwadar virtual LNG pipeline

Published December 18, 2020
Project envisions special purpose trucks to transport gas to consumers across the country. — Reuters/File
Project envisions special purpose trucks to transport gas to consumers across the country. — Reuters/File

LAHORE: Gwadar GasPort Limited (GGPL), a joint venture formed by the Pakistan GasPort Ltd, Al-Qasim Gas and Jamshoro Joint Venture Ltd entered into an agreement with Gwadar International Terminals Ltd to move liquefied natural gas (LNG) onto special purpose trucks for regasification at various industrial sites across the country.

Through an agreement signed at a ceremony, the GGPL will commence engineering work at the existing Berth-3 at the Gwadar port for shipment of LNG from a floating storage unit on to trucks for shipment to CNG stations, textile mills, fertiliser plants and other such large commercial and industrial units across the country.

The same concept underpinning this ‘virtual pipeline’ wherein no gas pipeline of Sui companies required, and as a result there will be no unaccounted-for-gas as is the case with the two Sui companies, is seamlessly working in countries such as China, Turkey, and India.

Project envisions special purpose trucks to transport gas to consumers across the country

“This is a major initiative in the private-sector to revolutionise the gas sector in Pakistan”, noted GGCL Chairman Mr Iqbal Z. Ahmed. “With no government off-take guarantee or investment, the private-to-private sector sales will cut the red-tape and cater better to the market forces.” The arrangement would help eliminate gas shortage next winter, he said.

As the gap in demand and supply of gas is expected to spiral beyond two billion cubic feet owing to rapid urbanisation, China-Pakistan Economic Corridor projects, and industrial growth, the virtual pipeline project initiated by the GGPL will help mitigate the brewing gas shortages and also transform the gas sector by transitioning away from the present monopoly of Sui companies to a competitive environment.

Speaking on the occasion, Gwadar International Terminals Ltd Captain Dai lauded the milestone marked at a modest signing ceremony while following Covid-19 safety measures, to bring LNG at the Gwadar port by using the Chinese-operated port as a hub for deliveries to Karachi and the other main centres of consumption in Quetta, Lahore, Peshawar, Sialkot and Faisalabad.

“The port is already successfully and safely handling a diverse range of commodities including LPG, fertiliser, cement, grains and more, and has become a showcase of the $52 billion CPEC,” he said.

Published in Dawn, December 18th, 2020

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