1. Petroleum Division (PD) has issued very political and misleading tweets in reaction to my earlier tweets. Before that too the Energy Ministry had issued a factually incorrect press release attacking me that was not worthy of response. But today I think it’s best to respond. https://twitter.com/official_petdiv/status/1312629459552526336
2. The Energy Ministry in a press release dated Sept 25 said that “perhaps Mr Ismail does not know that the terminals are running at full capacity”. Well, THEY ARE NOT. From Sept 1 to the date the Ministry sent the press release, the PGPL terminal was running at 475 MMCFD
3. against the contracted capacity of 600 MMCFD. The statements of the Ministry are dishonest, and disappointing.

Then the Ministry again said that a 17 km long pipeline is required to give more gas to Karachi. This again is not true. They can give more gas to Karachi if they
4. wish with the swap mechanism that our Govt used to induct 400 MMCFD RLNG in the SSGC gas network and gas in upper Sindh was inducted into the SNGPL network. Moreover, even if their assertion were true, which it is not, does the Ministry need 2 years to build a 17 km pipeline?
5. Now to tweets by the PD. But first let me make a comment about this Govt: it loves running power plants on Furnace Oil which produces less than two-thirds as much power as LNG per rupee of fuel, and on Diesel which costs about 3 times more than LNG per unit of electricity.
6. This June & July govt was producing power through Diesel & Furnace Oil while there was excess terminal capacity to import more LNG, losing the exchequer billions of rupees. No wonder Circular Debt now is at its highest & is MORE than the Federation’s share of ALL Federal taxes
7. Petroleum Division said that PMLN bought long-term LNG at 13.37% of Brent whereas it is buying spot LNG at 10%.
Seriously? Is the Petroleum Division unaware of supply-demand influences on the price of a commodity like LNG; is it unaware of the price difference between
8. long-term LNG contracts as compared to one-off spot LNG prices in a temporarily depressed market; is it unaware of the energy security that long-term LNG supply provides. (75% of worldwide LNG is sold on long-term contracts).
Can the Division inform us how many spot
9.LNG cargoes have been procured against the shortage?
Is the Division unaware of the need of long term LNG contracts; is it unaware of the prices of LNG contracts of other countries; is it unaware that Pakistan has the cheapest long-term LNG contract in the world from the
10. world’s most reliable LNG supplier. Can the Division deny that ALL of Pakistan’s LNG contracts were substantially less than the market in the timeframe that they were signed? Why is a Division of the Government issuing misleading statements and trying to subvert the truth?
11. Earlier this year Brent & LNG were at their cheapest due to a collapse in demand driven by Covid 19. Short- & medium-term LNG contracts were available below $2.5 level. This was an opportunity for Pakistan to save billions of dollars; did PD capitalise on the opportunity? No.
12. The Petroleum Division was too busy importing Furnace Oil and Diesel for power plants and made no long-term contract. Why? Is this not a dereliction of its fiduciary duty? Public is smart enough to figure out why is it being done and who are benefitting from this policy.
13.Why did PD exacerbate the gas shortage by not importing sufficient quantity of LNG? Why did it not make a single short or medium-term LNG contract when the market was so low? Why has it not laid one inch of pipeline when we need at least one more 42’ south-north gas pipeline?
14. Petroleum Division talks about giving permission to LNG terminals without government guarantees. PMLN set up two terminals urgently with government guarantees which ensured the fastest provision of gas and the cheapest terminal costs. The Engro/SSGC/PSO terminal has always
15. run on full capacity. If the Division had procured more LNG instead of deferring or diverting LNG cargoes it could have run the PLTL/PGPL terminal on full capacity too, thus making any Govt guarantees superfluous. Is the PD aware that there is a shortage of gas in Pakistan?
16. The policy of merchant LNG terminals supplying gas to multiple buyers through third party access (TPA) rules without Govt guarantees was also made during the PMLN Govt and at least 3 major investors were in the process of setting up LNG terminals at Port Qasim.
17. TPA rules were also made during our tenure and consumers in Pakistan imported LNG directly. But the $5 million question remains: why hasn’t work started on any Merchant LNG terminal in 2 years?

The most intellectually dishonest and seriously laughable assertion made by the
18. Petroleum Division is that we supplied LNG to our new gas-fired power plants to produce more expensive power. Does the Petroleum Division know the cost difference between operating a 32% efficiency FO power plant and operating a 62% efficiency gas power plant?
19. The three 1200 MW govt-owned power plants that PMLN Govt put up are the world’s most efficient power plants and form the backbone of our baseload power generation. (Work was underway on the fourth). All the Petroleum Division has to do is to provide these power plants with
20. LNG instead of importing Diesel for unfathomable reasons or pandering to the Furnace Oil lobby.

Finally, there is nothing wrong with tweets by any of the phalanx of Government Ministers, Advisors, SAPM’s, and Spokespersons arguing against my contentions. I welcome a debate.
21. But to use the Energy Ministry or the Petroleum Division platforms for political and misleading tweets and statements is wrong. Is it ethical to force a Government Ministry or a Division to tweet against its own past decisions?
22. Ministers should tweet under their names & not involve the bureaucracy in their political machinations. LNG is NOT a 4 letter word; it is the only viable solution for Pak’s energy security, even if Nawaz Sharif and Shahid Abbasi were the ones to first bring it to Pakistan.
You can follow @MiftahIsmail.
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