NA body for action against oil, gas companies failing to start drillings

ISLAMABAD: National Assembly Standing Committee on Petroleum and Natural Resources Tuesday expressed displeasure for not receiving details of the oil and gas producing companies, which failed to start drilling work for new discoveries within the stipulated time.

The body directed the Director General (Petroleum Concession) of the ministry to take stern action against the defaulting companies in one month.

Earlier, the DG could not provide the names of exploration and production companies whose licenses were either revoked or they have been issued show cause notices.

The committee warned the ministry that if its directives were not complied with, the matter would be taken to the Standing Committee on Rules of Procedures and Privileges.

The body also expressed dismay over non-completion of the full-funded gas development schemes of Parliamentarians by Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL).

The meeting also discussed gas theft cases in District Karak of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province.

A representative of the SNGPL told the committee that the national exchequer suffered Rs 13 billion loss due to gas theft since 2012 and the local administration was not cooperating with it, citing law and order situation.

The meeting was apprised that the KP government was getting Rs 27 billion under the Royalty and Production bonus, but could not spend the share (Rs 3 billion) of Karak, an oil producing district.

The committee decided to take the gas theft issue with the KP Chief Minister in the next meeting to resolve this serious issue.

The meeting, chaired by Chaudhry Bilal Ahmed Virk, was attended among other Minister for Petroleum Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, MNAs Tariq Fazl Chaudhry, Malik Ihtebar Khan, Rana Afzaal Hussain, Syed Muhammad Saqlain Bukhari, Tari Mehmood, Rana Muhammad Ishaq Khan, Chaudhry Khalid Javed Warraich , Nawab Ali Wassan, Shehryar Afridi, Nasir Khan Khattak, Akram Khan Durrani and Pir Bux Junejo, besides representatives from concerned departments.

Source: APP