Restoration of gas to Pakistan Steel Mills demanded

Lahore, February 29, 2016 (PPI-OT): Executive Committee Member of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry Raja Adeel Ashfaq has demanded immediate gas supply restoration to Pakistan Steel Mills. In a statement issued here Monday, Raja Adeel Ashfaq said that it is a matter of concern that Pakistan Steel Mills is completely closed because of unavailability of gas but concerned government functionaries in general and ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources is playing the role of silent spectators.

He said that policy markets should be well aware of the fact that Pakistan Steel Mills is not only a major source of steel products supply to the various domestic industries but is also has vital importance for defence industry. He said that closure of Pakistan Steel Mills is not only a national tragedy but could be very dangerous for the defence sector.

He said that due to closure of Pakistan Steel Mills, domestic industry is relying on imported hot rolled, cold rolled and galvanized steel etc and huge foreign exchange is being spent for this purpose. “If gas is available for CNG sector and other industries of Sindh then why not for Pakistan Steel Mills”, he questioned.

He said that Pakistan Steel Mills could be operationalized through alternative fuels but it seems that some elements are busy to tarnish soft image of the present regime. He said that Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif should take notice of the situation and direct the authorities concerned for early restoration of gas supply to Pakistan Steel Mills.

He said that keeping in view the massive loss of around Rs.600 billion annually being caused by the Public Sector Enterprises (PSEs) government should take measures on war footing to make these organizations profitable. He said that in the advanced economies like the United States, United Kingdom and Japan etc, the role of PSEs is minimal and the private sector is the most important instrument of socio-economic prosperity, and there is continued growth of privately-run corporations. He said that the significance of PSEs cannot be ignored, in view of the fact that they remain the most employment-intensive and capital-intensive organizations.

He suggested formation of a committee of experts from public and private sectors to revisit strategy and adopt methods which provide a new impetus to the PSEs. He said that the committee should go deep into the broader political philosophy and vision under which the PSEs will be required to play their role in the new competitive environment. Raja Adeel Ashfaq also urged the Chief Minister Punjab Mian Shahbaz Sharif to consider the idea of Punjab Steel Mills as it would not only strengthen the national economy but would also be a great favour the country.

For more information, contact:
Shahid Khalil
Information Department
Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
11-Shahrah-e-Aiwan-e-Tijarat,
Lahore -54000, Pakistan
Tel: +92-42-111-222-499
Fax: +92-42-36368854
Website: www.lcci.org.pk