Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Low pressure of gas causes unrest among industrialists

Low pressure of gas causes unrest among industrialists

FAISALABAD  (December 29, 2010) : Although gas supply to industries of Faisalabad was restored on Tuesday after closure of four days, despite that most of the industrial units in Maqbool Road, Abdullahpur and some other industrial areas could not start work due to low pressure of gas.

Due to the closure of sizing units, about 100,000 powerlooms have become non-functional. Furthermore, loadshedding of 10 to 14 hours is a major problem for the industrialists. The daily wagers have been facing starvation. It has become almost impossible to prepare meals in the houses in time due to very low pressure of gas in Bazar of Clock Tower, Sir Syed Town, Jhang Road and other parts of the city. The residents of the various areas have strongly protested against the low pressure of gas and also chanted slogans against the Suigas authorities.

Chairman, Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHMA) North Zone Chaudhry Salamat Ali said that it was a pity that Prime Minister of Pakistan could not fulfil his promises. He said it is quite distressing that with the announcement of restoring gas its pressure has been made low. The long and unscheduled power outages have also jammed the wheel of industries, he added.

Ali said that as a result of government's poor policies, the industrial growth in the country has come to a complete halt
. He said that the Prime Minister Gilani had announced two days gas closure of Suigas in a week across the board, but the same could not be implemented. The local industrialists have reminded the promise made by the Chief Minister Punjab, Shahbaz Sharif and have also requested him to visit Faisalabad on December 31, 2010.

No end to power and gas loadshedding in sight: hundreds of industrial units closed

MULTAN  (December 29, 2010) : The continuous electricity and gas loadshedding is annoying the business and manufacturer class with the small and medium manufacturers as the worst affected. It has resulted in the closer of hundred of industrial units, which has left thousands of workers as jobless, multiplying the sufferings of their families who are already facing the consequences of non-stop rise in inflation.

But the long list of depressed people also includes domestic consumers, as there is no gas for cooking and women are forced to use coal and wood. It resulted in widespread protests across Punjab Monday, as people came out on the streets to express their anger.
Meanwhile, SNGPL suspended the gas supply to the industries in Punjab two days before the announced schedule despite the fact that the federal cabinet on the request of All Pakistan Textile Manufacturers Association (APTMA) had decided to suspend the supply to the fertiliser sector only. The SNGPL policy will make it impossible to achieve the export target. On the other hand, SNGPL General Manager Multan, Ali Hussain says severe cold wave has increased the gas demand for domestic usage to 925MCF.

In Multan, contrary to the MEPCO's claims, people were badly hit by power outages, the duration of which touched about 6 to 8 hours. The MEPCO had announced three days ago that loadshedding would not increase beyond three to four hours in cities during the period of canal closure (December 26-January 31). However, the situation was totally different in the limits of the MEPCO since the announcement has been made. It was learnt that the national grid was facing about 5,500 MW shortfall due to low thermal and hydel production resulting in an average of 6 to 8 hours load Shedding in Urban areas and 10 to 12-hour daily unscheduled loadshedding in Rural areas

The people who were already facing gas shortages blamed the mismanagement of the government in every sector, which was adding to their problems. They said despite enjoying three-year rule, the government had failed to bring improvement in energy sector. Decrease in discharge of water from Mangla and Tarbela reservoirs squeezed the hydel power generation by 2,557 MW as it triggered power shortage across the country especially in rural areas. The Pepco says the electricity shortfall stands at 2,995MW against the total demand of 12,735MW. It stated the power generation during the last 24 hours-remained 9,740MW.

The KESC was given 690MW to meet the requirement of more than 10 million people. The thermal, IPPs and RPPs share in national grid remained 1550MW, 5571MW and 62MW respectively. On the other hand, in many areas of the country in winter the gas supply is not sufficient that is badly affecting manufacturing activities of those industries that are dependent on gas for their complete or partial production process. It is also pertinent to mention that the government has ordered two days gas load shedding for CNG that has also caused problems for business community as most of the transport is now converted on gas and even the small loader vehicles are now on petrol engines and CNG based.

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