Minister warns against hoarding petrol

F.P. Report
ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Petroleum Dr Musadik Malik asserted on Wednesday that Pakistan had sufficient fuel supplies as he warned those hoarding petrol and diesel stocks of “dire consequences”.
Addressing a press conference on Wednesday in Islamabad, Malik warned hoarders and said: “Some people, like always, are hoarding … I want to request those people to stop today and consider this request a warning … you won’t be able to hoard and rob the people’s right. “This is our resolve and you will have to bear very strict consequences if you persist. We will cancel your licences. Your business will end as a result of your attempt to avail the benefits for four to five days.”
The minister was of the view that a “few people” were involved in creating an artificial shortage with the aim of selling fuel in the future at exorbitant rates. He said the government would ensure the state’s writ at any cost. “I request to those hoarding petroleum products to shun this practice and to not challenge the writ of the state.”
Regarding current stocks of petroleum products, the minister said: “Sufficient useable stocks of petroleum products are available in the country to meet petrol needs for 20 days and diesel for 29 days. This excludes cargoes arriving and waiting in the sea for berthing.” Malik said prices of petroleum products were revised by the government as per the scheduled time, international market and rupee-dollar parity, adding that at the moment “there is no plan to raise prices”. Replying to a question, he said an agreement with Russia would hopefully be finalised, following which low-cost crude oil would start arriving in Pakistan.