Blame put on supply chain for fuel crisis
TFD Monitoring ISLAMABAD: The commission set up by the prime minister to investigate the 10-day oil crisis which almost paralysed the country this month has blamed almost the entire oil supply chain, including the ministries of power, petroleum and finance, Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra), the management and board of Pakistan State Oil (PSO), market players and Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (PNSC) for the acute fuel shortage.
The two-member commission comprising Zahid Muzaffar and Zafar Masud recommended structural reforms in the energy sector and main- taining above 300,000 tons of fuel stocks at all times to cover at least 20 days of consumption.
Members of the commission considered close to Finance Minister Ishaq Dar called for action against the chairman and member of Ogra, reprimanded the PNSC management and fixed direct responsibility on eight officers of the petroleum ministry and PSO.
The inquiry report available with Dawn also accused what it described as the black sheep in the oil industry - oil marketing companies (OMCs) and dealers - of being involved in hoarding and black marketing of petrol. It suggested diversion of at least 50 per cent power sector bills and tariff differential subsidy to the PSO to avoid similar crisis in future. It also accused the Oil Companies Advisory Council (OCAC) of having been negligent.
The report said the crisis had been brewing for quite some time and "surely a result of structural issues and not only an event-driven situation", adding that some issues needed to be fixed urgently while structural issues could be tackled in medium to long-term.
The issues identified by the report included poor management practices, systems and management incompetence at the PSO, inability to appreciate the extent of the potential issue
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