New Gas Connections: Ministry urged To Expedite Process
The Punjab-based textile millers have urged the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources to expedite the process of new gas connections to encourage utilization of Re-gasified Liquid Natural Gas in the country. Talking to the Business Recorder, they said an early issuance of the policy for new connections would impetus the growth of textile industry in Punjab where the textile units have already suffered heavily due to the non-availability and non-affordability of energy since November 2007.
“The textile industry is a highly efficient energy user with no defaults on payment of monthly bills,” said one miller who has applied for gas connection recently. There are two categories seeking supply of the RLNG, including the one who have got allocated gas but not energized yet. The number of such millers is around 100. While the number of those who got allocated gas and still waiting for the connection is around 1000, which included small and medium enterprises besides commercial entities, demanding some 1200MMCFD gas.
There was a time when the Punjab-based textile industry was terming the Prime Minister’s textile industry relief package as “too little and too late.” However, the millers are of the view that it is not “too little” now after the availability of the RLNG at $6.3 per MMBTU but definitely “too late” if one takes into account a delay in the issuance of new gas connections.
Majority of the textile millers believe that availability of the RLNG on 24/7 has brought stability to the industry by and large but it has not come out of crisis yet. They said the latest results of the listed textile units reveal that they have booked a loss of Rs 100 per spindle for the quarter closed in December 2015, equivalent to three crore rupees loss per quarter and 12 crore rupees per annum. “Those who are not listed with the stock exchange are even in a more vulnerable situation due to multiple factors,” they added.
“The ministry should priorities the mills where infrastructure is well in place for gas supply connection,” they stressed. The industry circles have pointed out that only the availability of energy on affordable price is the solution of increasing teatime exports ahead. They further said the neighbour country Iran has shown interest in importing textile products from Pakistan and this opportunity can only be availed if the government is serious in supplying maximum RLNG to the textile mills by issuing new connections without delay.

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