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LNG has potential to help overcome Pak energy crisis

Commenting on the likely agreement with Qatar for purchasing LNG, Kamran Khan said in his programme ‘Aaj Kamran Khan Kay Sath’ on Monday that overcoming the energy crisis is the government’s first priority and so the government has decided to purchase Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) from Qatar.

This is a huge project through which the country is to purchase $3.5 billion worth of LNG from Qatar.Kamran Khan said that the LNG has the potential to overcome the country’s energy crisis, but at the same time it is important to determine whether this is the best price we are getting from Qatar and what is the price trend in this connection in the world.

The energy sector is making some progress worldwide, and some recent developments suggest that there is a likelihood of the price of LNG falling.

Kamran Khan said as far as purchasing LNG from Qatar is concerned the government has secured exemption for itself from the transparent PPRA rules being applied in this case. This is going to be a direct agreement.

He said that it is being said that this is a direct government-to-government agreement, but it has been observed that Qatar has brought an American company, ConocoPhillips, into the equation and said that the government of Pakistan has to deal with ConocoPhillips. A delegation of the American company is arriving in Pakistan on July 30.

Commenting on the next president, Kamran Khan said that it is becoming evident that Nawaz Sharif wants to nominate former governor of Sindh, Mamnoon Hussain, to be the party’s candidate. Mamnoon Hussain has been an old associate of Nawaz Sharif, and he even stood with Nawaz when his government was toppled and he was imprisoned.

Commenting on the sorry state of affairs at some national organisations, Kamran Khan said that the dilapidated condition of the public sector organisations has been a nuisance for the Nawaz government. The government wants to reform the public sector organisations. PIA and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) are government’s priorities. Among the very first steps by the government was the decision to withdraw PIA and CAA from the Defence Ministry and to place them under a separate division.

In a different segment of the programme, Kamran Khan said that the situation in Karachi is of utmost importance to the federal government, and this was reflected when the Federal Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan arrived in Karachi on an official visit and took stock of the situation. He brought with him a goodwill message for the Sindh government vis-à-vis the federal government’s desire to help the provincial government on Karachi. Improving the situation in the port city is one of the priorities of the federal government.

Commenting on the economy, Kamran Khan said that the change of government has boosted the confidence of the investors. This phenomenon is best reflected in the stock markets. The index at the Karachi Stock Exchange has increased by nine percent in the last month and a half. The thing to be noted is that the price of the shares of the corporations in the public sector is going up. This indicates that the investors believe that improvements in the functioning of these corporations are on the way.

Senior analyst Farrukh Saleem, while speaking to Kamran Khan in the programme, said that the expected agreement with Qatar on LNG is not a government-to-government agreement. He said that the royal family of Qatar has partnerships with two or three oil companies, ConocoPhillips being one of those companies.

Farrukh Saleem said as far as price is concerned it should be remembered that we will be bound by those prices for the next 20 years. He said that the government of Pakistan is going to enter into LNG agreement for almost $18 a unit whereas India in December 2011 had an agreement with Qatar for $13 a unit.

The adviser to the PM on aviation, Shujaat Azeem said in the programme that new-generation aircraft will be added to the PIA fleet within two months.

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