KARACHI: Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Monday demanded the government of withdraw its decision of increasing duty and taxes on CNG sector.
In a statement FPCCI President Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo said that the sales tax on LNG for CNG sector has been increased from 5 per cent to 17 per cent – while customs duty of 5 per cent has also been imposed. “Given that CNG is expensive and the survival of this business is in jeopardy. This decision should be reversed immediately,” he demanded.
He said that the gas crisis is caused by poor management, bad decision-making, and lack of vision. After Sindh, gas is being cut off across the country; which is unacceptable. This will cause huge losses to the business community and the public alike; affecting businesses and reducing production and exports.
Addressing an emergency press conference, FPCCI’s President said that the entire country was in the grip of energy crisis due to the badly-timed import of LNG and CNG sector.
It was the worst time to go for yearly repair and maintenance of the LNG terminal. As a result, it has been decided to generate electricity from furnace oil; which is an expensive option.
The government neither imports gas itself; nor allows the CNG sector to import – which is out of sound mind.
Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha – Group Leader, All Pakistan CNG Association – said that the policies of the energy sector were not in line with the ground realities. The crisis will continue until the CNG sector is allowed to import its own gas. Gas companies are destroying people’s businesses and taking away jobs. If we import our own gas, the load shedding will end and the government will generate Rs. 82 billion; but, this is not acceptable to a few bureaucrats. He further added that the CNG sector in Punjab and Sindh is using imported gas; so, it has nothing to do with the reduction in domestic gas production; nor does it have any justification to cut off gas.
Khalid Latif – Chairman, All Pakistan CNG Association – said that Rs. 450 billion have been invested in the CNG sector; but, the future is bleak. Hundreds of thousands of workers have been displaced from the CNG sector; but, they have been brought to the brink of disaster.
FPCCI demanded that the government should take steps to rehabilitate the sector by revoking the decision to impose additional taxes and ensuring the availability of environmentally friendly and cheap fuel to the people; so that, pollution and fares do not increase and millions of jobs can be saved.