Federal Minister for Petroleum Umar Ayub Monday announced at the floor of the upper house that the circular debt will be zero by December 2020. The incumbent government inherited circular debt of Rs230 billion in Sui Southern and Sui Northern Gas companies whereas Rs450 billion in the power sector, he said. Concluding a debate on the adjournment motion on recent increase on petroleum prices he said, Pakistan is a net importer country of crude oil therefore, it completely depends on international prices.
He said the oil price in the international market was 27$ per barrel in 2014 but the government of the day instead of decreasing, imposed 56% sales tax and in comparison, to this day the oil price in the international market is 72$ per barrel but the government is charging only 17% tax.
The minister further said the government refused to accept Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority’s advice on petroleum prices during the last eight months and gave a relief of Rs52 billion to the people which itself is a record.
He said in comparison to India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, the oil price in Pakistan are still low whereas United Arab Emirates which is an oil producing country, increased the oil prices.