Gov’t to conduct independent audit of gas billing for December 2018

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ISLAMABAD, Feb 6 (APP):The Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE) decided Wednesday to conduct an independent audit of gas billing for December 2018 through external auditors in addition to the inquiry regarding excessive billing already conducted by the Petroleum Division.
The meeting presided over by Minister for Finance Asad Umar, also decided that the reports of both the inquiry and the independent audit would be submitted to CCoE.
The meeting was especially called on the instructions of the Prime Minister to look into the matter of inflated gas billings to the consumers.
Prior to that Secretary Petroleum Division gave a detailed presentation to the Committee on the recent billing exercise of the Gas sector.
Chairperson Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) Uzma Adil Khan and Managing Director Sui Norther Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) Amir Tufail also gave their input in this regard.
The meeting was informed that the consumers were billed according to the slabs in which they fall, in accordance with their consumption.
The Secretary Petroleum Division said that following the complaints of a large number of consumers an inquiry had already been launched to look into the matter.
The inquiry would look at the issue comprehensively from all the different angles.
The Secretary also briefed the Committee that there had been an overall increase of 8 percent in the consumption pattern of the consumers falling in the lowest consumption slab.
He also said that out of the total 6400,000 gas consumers, only 92,000 consumers that fall in the 6th and 7th (highest consumption slabs), had been affected by high gas bills.
It was also pointed out by chairperson OGRA that during the month of December, the domestic consumption of gas doubles which has changed the pricing slabs for many consumers.
However, she also suggested that the data for the last two months may be looked into to find any anomaly.
The meeting also discussed the issue of Gas theft,action taken against illegal practices and the determination of the unaccounted for Gas (UFG) loss benchmark and directed M/o Energy to address the issue.