ISLAMABAD: President Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) Muhammad Ijaz Abbasi Wednesday lashed out at Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) for increase in the commercial and industrial gas prices.He expressed great concern over 10 percent increase in the industrial gas rates and said that Pakistani industries are already facing lot of difficulties to compete the international market due to their high cost of production.
He said that price hike hit the poor very hard and this increase will affect the industrial production and particularly the prices of steel, fertilizer, glass, cement and energy products will go up. He mentioned that price hike in gas, energy and petroleum products will directly affect the life of masses. He suggested that government should take strict measures to control the price hike and demanded that ICCI must be given representation in OGRA.
Abbasi maintained that foreign countries are capturing Pakistani market due to their cheaper products. President was also informed in a meeting with the representatives of local LPG distributors that most LPG production companies are taking the profit of Rs 35 per one kilogram of gas. This caused 17 marketing companies to come to a close and more are expected to halt their operation in future.
Local distributors informed the ICCI president that the price of gas was Rs 19,648 per metric tonne two years back and now the price of LPG is Rs 40,842 per metric tonnes with net increase of 115 percent. President termed the increase in LPG prices as injustice with poor people of the country and was of the view that its prices are badly affecting the domestic budget of households. Increase in prices would discourage gas consumption and would force people to revert to the use of coal and wood, he added.-SANA