Govt jacks up gas prices by 112% 

The government on Wednesday sharply increased the natural gas tariff by up to 112% for domestic (everyday consumers) and general industries, including export-oriented sectors, captive power plants, CNG and IPPs, and commercial sectors.

However, the gas tariff has been kept unchanged for tandoors. The new prices will be effective from January 2023.

The development comes on the heels of a massive increase in the prices of petroleum products announced on Wednesday.

The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) issued a notification following the advice of the Petroleum Division. The move was taken for complying with a long-stalled financial bailout from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division) has communicated the decision of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC), ratified by the federal cabinet, in respect of gas sale price, effective January 1, 2023. The Ogra, after receipt of the said advice, notified the sale prices against each category of retail consumers of natural gas,” a spokesperson for the regulator said.

The tariff will be uniform throughout the country on both Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited and Sui Southern Gas Company Limited networks.

For domestic consumers, the earlier consumption level of up to 0.1HM cube/month gas consumption was charged Rs300/mmBtu and now it has been increased to Rs400, depicting an increase of 33.3%. Similarly, up to 2HM cube/month, the consumption tariff has been increased by 44.7% to Rs800/mmBtu; for up to 3HM cube/month consumer category, the tariff has been increased by 49% to Rs1100/mmBtu.

For the higher consumer categories, the tariff has been increased the most.

As for the category of up to 4HM cube/unit consumers, the tariff has been increased by 80.7% to Rs2000/mmBtu and likewise, for above 4HM cube/month consumers, the tariff was hiked by 112.3% to Rs3,100/mmBtu.

According to the Ogra notification, gas off-take for the CNG sector has been determined at a flat rate of Rs1,500 mmBtu against an earlier tariff of Rs1,371/mmBtu.

For Independent Power Producers (IPPs), the bulk off-take tariff has been increased to Rs1,050/mmBtu from earlier Rs857/mmBtu.

For captive gas users, the tariff has been increased to Rs1,200/mmBtu from earlier Rs1,087/mmBtu. Captive plants are those which have been established by an industrial undertaking/unit to produce power for their own consumption and or sell the surplus to DISCO or bulk power consumers. Captive power plants’ minimum gas charges have been increased to Rs36,653/month from earlier Rs36,450/month.

The minimum charges are those that are levied by the gas utility if you consume the gas or not, you will have to pay it. In other words, it is just like meter rent in the electricity bills or line rent of the PTCL phone connection.

For Wapda and K-Electric’s power stations, the bulk tariff has been increased from Rs857 to Rs1,050/mmBtu and minimum charges have been kept unchanged at Rs28,898/month.

For the cement sector, the tariff has been increased by 17.5% to Rs1,500/mmBtu.

For all established commercial units, the tariff has been increased by 28.6% to Rs1,650/mmBtu from earlier Rs1,283/mmBtu while the minimum charges have been kept unchanged at Rs6,415/month.

The commercial units include those with local authorities or those dealing in consumer items for direct commercial sales like cafes, bakeries, milk shops, tea stalls, canteens, barber shops, laundries, hotels, malls, places of entertainment such as cinemas, clubs, theatres and private offices, corporate firms, and ice factories.

For tandoors, the minimum monthly charges have been kept unchanged at Rs148.5/month and the tariff will also remain unchanged for all the categories.

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