Some forces don’t want Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project: Raza Rabbani

BusinessSome forces don’t want Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project: Raza Rabbani

KARACHI: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) senior leader Senator Raza Rabbani said on Friday that some forces don’t want completion of Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project and it is one of the major factors for what PPP was blocked to come into power.

Speaking at a press conference at Karachi Press Club on Friday, Rabbani expressed concern over speculations regarding delay in IP gas project and said that secretary petroleum had told the Senate standing committee that project would not be completed in time as the caretaker government had failed to mobilise sovereign guarantee.

Rabbani said the caretaker government did not mobilise sovereign guarantee which was needed to ensure timely completion of the project.

The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2014.

The PPP leader demanded of the upcoming federal government to issue sovereign guarantee on priority basis so that the much needed project could be completed in time. He said that 750 million cubic feet gas could be added into the national grid through the Iran-Pakistan project.

“If any decision is made to withdraw IP gas and Gwadar port projects, then it would badly affect Pakistan’s strategic interests and reputation,” he said.

Rabbani said that the decision would not only cause severe energy crises in the country but will also affect the whole region.

The PPP leader said that their government had signed these agreements keeping in view Pakistan’s vital and strategic interests.

He said that they hoped Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government would mobilise the sovereign guarantee to save the project on priority basis as delay would increase its cost.

Rabbani said that US and UK ambassadors’ activities after general elections showed that they still consider themselves as viceroys, adding that they are not supposed to interfere in government affairs.

Moreover, he lashed out at National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) and Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) for raising power tariff. He said that NEPRA had increased power rate by 75 paisas per unit some days back while it had already increased power rate by Rs5 per unit before it.

Rabbani demanded of the incoming government to bring KESC under the government control as per NEPRA rules and should withdraw its “anti-people actions.”

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