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Karachi Electric Supply Company condemns cut in gas supply, demands Government to resolve circular debt issue

Karachi: Karachi Electric Supply Company has strongly condemned the unilateral reduction in gas supply to the power generation plants by SSGC resulting in production going down and forcing it resort to load shed in the usually-exempt Industrial Zones apart from the enhanced load shedding hours in residential and commercial areas.

KESC demanded of the government to check policy violation and block the diversion of the power sector gas quota to other sectors, including captive power units. KESC said that SSGC had chosen to curtail gas supply to the power utility on extremely conservative grounds of circular debt which was not the exclusive responsibility of KESC but more a task of the Federal and Provincial Governments which owed over Rs. 55 billion rupees to the power utility as against outstanding amount of Rs. 24 billion of SSGC.
The most pertinent analogy was that of Water Board’s payable Rs. 15.5 billions in spite of which KESC had not curtailed power supply to water pumping stations in the best public interest. While SSGC, being a public sector company itself fully aware of the essential needs of power consumers had deemed it fit to axe gas supply to KESC causing great hardship to over 20 million populations.

KESC requested the competent authorities to directly offset the Rs. 15.5 billion payable by KWSB to SSGC, to settle down the issue once and for all.

Quite contrary to the public interest, SSGC had considered it perfect to continue undue gas supply to captive power plants, in clear violation of its own policy. Despite all these facts, SSGC had, on the evening of Thursday November 17, undertaken unilateral and condemnable step of drastically cutting down the gas supply to KESC. Already, over the past two days, the gas supply from SSGC has inadvertently been erratic at best.

With this latest development in the gas supply from SSGC, KESC has been left with no choice but to resort to load shedding in the industrial zones of the metropolis, which were previously exempted from any and all sort of load shedding.

KESC said that the power sector which is in effect a public service sector should be given top priority in terms of provision of low cost fuel to power generation plants since it directly affects the lives of the masses. Strangely, SSGC seems to be following reverse philosophy, whereby the power sector is on the lowest place of its gas supply hierarchy.

Although KESC has been subjected to a massive decline in the supply of gas by SSGC, there have been no parallel steps of curtailing the gas supply to other sectors, which are using the national and public resources for personal gains.

During the current year, KESC had paid Rs. 15.5 Billion to SSGC, and had time and again reiterated its offer to the gas provider to sign a GSA (Gas Sale Agreement), based on the provision of the committed quota of 276 MMCFD of gas, to meet the electricity demands of the city.

The response to this offer to date has merely been silence. KESC demanded an immediate signing of GSA, resolution to circular debt issue, and restoration of KESC’s 276 quota of natural gas.

For more information, contact:
Adil Murtaza
Assistant Manager, Media and PR
Karachi Electric Supply Company Limited (KESC)
2nd Floor, State Life Building No 11, Abdullah Haroon Road, Saddar, Karachi
Tel: +9221 9920 7163
Cell: +92346 822 3641
Email: adil.murtaza@kesc.com.pk

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