No more room for government subsidy on petroleum products: Dr Asim Hussain

Dr Asim Hussain

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain on Thursday laid bare the government’s chips: There is no more cushion for subsidy on petroleum products.   

Replying to a point of order raised by MQM lawmaker Haider Abbas Rizvi in the Joint Sitting over the recent hike and then a nominal decrease in petroleum prices, the minister said that the government was already providing subsidies on electricity, gas and fertiliser, hence it was too difficult for it to give out any more subsidies.He said that being an independent regulator, the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) fixes prices of petroleum products rather than petroleum ministry.

Detailing the factors which determine price of petroleum products, the minister said that prices of petroleum products included, internal freight, oil marketing companies fixed margin, dealer margin, petroleum levy and general sales tax (GST). He said that after the NFC award, the provinces and federation have 70 and 30 per cent share in GST respectively and the provinces should also come forward to give more relief to the masses.

He said that the whole world was facing the brunt of inflation adding that prices of petroleum products were still higher in India, Afghanistan and Bangladesh than Pakistan.He welcomed MQM’s suggestion to constitute a committee for deciding prices of petroleum products. – Thetribune