In a bid to remove concerns of Sindh province on allocation of gas, Federal government has decided to give the provinces access to real time data of oil and gas production and consumption. The move , however, is likely to give birth to a serious debate between provinces and the federal government on production and distribution of gas and natural resources.
It is worth noting that, In November Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali had also had written a letter to Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to allocate all natural gas from old and new wellheads located in the province for local consumers so that the provincial requirements in power, fertilizer, industrial, domestic and commercial sectors are met.
Taking note of Syed Murad Ali’s letter, Prime asked the federal government to take Sindh province into condifence when it comes to production of natural gas and its distribution.
Complying with directions of the Prime Minister, federal government has agreed to allow access of real time data of oil and gas production and consumption of natural gas to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) to settle dispute with the provinces over use of gas being produced from its fields.
KP and Sindh provinces had approached the federal government for access to real-time production data of oil and gas from well-heads and natural gas consumption in KP and Sindh with Sindh even suggesting that data be emailed to them and/or uploaded on the Ministry’s website.
Inter Provincial Coordination Committee (IPCC) held on October 9 decided that a proper mechanism for sharing data of oil and gas may be formulated with the provinces after holding consultative meetings with provincial representatives.
The committee also directed the Petroleum Division to ensure uploading the data relating to oil and gas on their website on a weekly basis and simultaneously emailing the same to the Secretary Energy of the provinces.
Two provinces Sindh and KP have been alleging use of its gas by Punjab province and they were of the view that they had first right to use gas under article 158.This article allows the gas producing provinces to use their gas to meet needs before giving it to other province under 18th amendment. According to sources the Council of Common Interests (CCI) in its meeting held last month, considered the summary submitted by the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and approved their request for access to real time production data of oil and gas from well heads and natural gas consumption in KP.
The council further directed the ministry of energy (petroleum division) to immediately replicate and install the requisite software by SNGPL in Energy and Power Departments for ascertaining the amount of processed gas dispatches and consumed the provinces of KP and other provinces if any. The SNGPL was directed to immediately allow the energy and power departments to check for the accuracy of the TBS and SMS and other metering mechanism.
At present, there has been no mechanism in place for the provinces to monitor daily production of oil and gas from various fields. Although, the federal government departments have the working software to monitor this data, it was not being shared with the provinces despite repeated request for installation of this software by the provincial energy departments.