SSGC warns of ‘acute shortage of gas’, notifies supply cutoff to Karachi captive power plants

Published January 3, 2021
The SSGCL has already informed all industrial associations regarding closure of gas to captive power units of all non-export general industries in a letter sent on the last day of the year 2020. — Dawn/File
The SSGCL has already informed all industrial associations regarding closure of gas to captive power units of all non-export general industries in a letter sent on the last day of the year 2020. — Dawn/File

KARACHI: President Arif Alvi has assured the industrialists he will take up the growing gas crisis in the city with “the relevant ministries”, a press release issued by the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Saturday claimed.

In a meeting with the KCCI President Shariq Vohra at Governor House, Alvi is reported to have said he will update the business community “within a couple of days regarding exact causes of gas shortages and strategies that are being devised to deal with the situation”, the KCCI press release said.

“The KCCI chief informed the president that the ongoing gas crisis in Karachi has become a very serious issue that needs to be probed because at a time when the exports were picking up, some elements somewhere in the system abruptly intervened and created gas shortage which has resulted in closure of many factories” the statement said.

He feared that if the gas crises go on like this, it will become difficult not only for the exporters to despatch their shipments on time but also the general industries would not be able ensure smooth supply goods in the local markets.

NKATI threatens shutdown

In a separate statement issued on Saturday, North Karachi Association of Trade and Industry (NKATI) President Faisal Moiz Khan expressed deep concern over the sudden suspension of gas supply to factories in the industrial area by Sui Southern Gas Company Ltd (SSGCL).

He threatened to shut down all the factories and hand over the keys to Prime Minister Imran Khan if the industrial gas was not restored in the next 48 hours.

KCCI meets with President, demands continuous supply

Despite the 18th amendment, Sindh is not getting its due right from the gas produced in the province while the first right over natural resources belongs to the province, he said, adding deprivation of rights will make matters worse.

SAI asks for ‘emergent arrangements’

SITE Association of Industry (SAI) Senior Vice-President Riaz Uddin in a separate statement asked the federal government to make “emergent arrangements” to provide gas to Sindh industries as they had been assured of uninterrupted fuel supply at an enhanced rate of Rs930 to the industrial sector.

He said the government was supposed to procure additional RLNG for two existing terminals to produce 1,250-1,300 mmcfd to supply to the industry on-time during winter, out of which 1,000 mmcfd was supposed to be given to SNGPL and 200 -250 mmcfd to SSGC.

However, he feared that due to delay in procuring additional RLNG for January, 150 mmcfd would likely go to SNGPL and only 50 mmcfd to SSGCL which is merely peanuts for the entire industry in Sindh.

Under the current cold weather, Quetta would also require substantial gas pressure. As a result, the industries in Sindh would hardly be getting any gas in winter months and would be left high and dry, he said.

Korangi Association of Trade and Industry President Saleem uz Zaman said the industrial units were getting pressure of five PSI instead of required seven to eight PSI.

On issue of gas closure to captive power units of all non-export units, he said many members on Saturday complained discontinuation of gas supply to their units.

No gas for captive units

Meanwhile, the SSGCL has already informed all industrial associations regarding closure of gas to captive power units of all non-export general industries in a letter sent on the last day of the year 2020.

The utility said “it is facing acute shortage of gas supplies from different fields and around 150mmcfd gas is being short supplied during this winter as compared to last year. The company has informed this to the federal government and as per sector priority approved by the Cabinet Committee on Energy in its meeting held on Nov 26, 2020. SSGCL had to curtail captive power units of general industries (non-export) from middle of Dec to end of January 2021.

SSGCL asked the industrialists, who fall in this category, to switchover all their power generation units on alternative fuel or meet the requirement of electricity through general grid.

SSCCL spokesman said supply of gas to captive power units had been suspended temporarily. He said the company has inked an agreement with captive power sector for nine months and the company is not bound to provide gas to them from November to January.

He said gas supply to captive power of export oriented units has not been shut.

Published in Dawn, January 3rd, 2021

Follow Dawn Business on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook for insights on business, finance and tech from Pakistan and across the world.

Opinion

Editorial

Price bombs
17 Jun, 2024

Price bombs

THERE was a time not too long ago when the faces we see sitting in government today would cry themselves hoarse over...
Palestine’s plight
Updated 17 Jun, 2024

Palestine’s plight

While the faithful across the world are celebrating with their families, thousands of Palestinian children have either been orphaned, or themselves been killed by the Israeli aggressors.
Profiting off denied visas
17 Jun, 2024

Profiting off denied visas

IT is no secret that visa applications to the UK and Schengen countries come at a high cost. But recent published...
After the deluge
Updated 16 Jun, 2024

After the deluge

There was a lack of mental fortitude in the loss against India while against US, the team lost all control and displayed a lack of cohesion and synergy.
Fugue state
16 Jun, 2024

Fugue state

WITH its founder in jail these days, it seems nearly impossible to figure out what the PTI actually wants. On one...
Sindh budget
16 Jun, 2024

Sindh budget

SINDH’S Rs3.06tr budget for the upcoming financial year is a combination of populist interventions, attempts to...