SSGC’s gas suspension slammed: Half of industrial units to close down

Shahnawaz AkhterWeb Editor

23rd Jun, 2021. 05:00 pm

KARACHI: Industrialists warned on Wednesday that the Sui Southern Gas Company’s (SSGC’s) decision to suspend supply to industries in Karachi would force half of the units towards closure.

On Tuesday, the SSGC’s had announced the suspension of gas supply to all the seven industrial zones in Karachi.

In a joint statement, Businessmen Group (BMG) Chairman and Site Association of Industry (SAI) Patron-in-Chief Zubair Motiwala and its President Abdul Hadi protested against 100 percent gas closure of general industries by the gas utility and termed the move ‘disastrous for the Karachi industries.

They appealed to Prime Minister Imran Khan, Energy Minister Hammad Azhar, Special Adviser to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Energy Tabish Gohar and Sindh Governor Imran Ismail to revert the decision, otherwise, almost 50 percent of the industrial units would close down, resulting in mass unemployment.

Motiwala and Hadi said that the gas suspension to Karachi industries without taking the stakeholders in confidence is an act of injustice with the industries.

How can such a big decision be taken without consulting the industrial community? Motiwala questioned. “We are of the opinion that appropriate steps should be taken with mutual consent.”

If 50 percent of industries are export-oriented units and the remaining 50 percent are general industries, what is the wisdom behind the gas suspension of those units and interrupting their production, which is meant for domestic consumption, they said, adding that there is no shortage of re-gasified liquefied natural gas (RLNG) in the country. K-Electric and other utilities were already being run on gas, and as such, this is not the opportune time to suspend gas to general industries.

“The government should take decisions in the larger interest of the economy. Instead of anti-industry steps, it should focus on reducing the production cost and promoting industrialization to produce more avenues for employment,” they added.

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