Gas tariffs not to be raised temporarily by interim government

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Several recently developed technologies, which have the potential to significantly boost energy efficiency and savings, have been developed by the caretaker government in its bid to provide much-needed relief to the people who are coping with skyrocketing utility bills amid soaring inflation in Pakistan.

During a cabinet meeting, which had been convened by Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar, the executive body also directed the appropriate authorities to review the gas price hike that was supposed to come into effect on November 1, which had already been scheduled for implementation at the beginning of November.

A massive tariff hike of up to 193% was approved by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) last week after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) requested that the energy sector address its increasing circular debt. It is pertinent to mention that the first tariff hike of this magnitude was approved by the US Congress in 2013.

The approval by the cabinet today, would have resulted in a rise of 173 percent for the gas tariff for non-protected domestic consumers, 136.4% for commercial, 86.4% for exports, and 117% for non-exports industries for non-protected domestic consumers.

In response to the ECC’s approval, the fixed monthly charges will be increased from Rs10 to Rs400 for protected consumers, from Rs460 to Rs1,000 for non-protected consumers, and up to Rs2,000 for higher slabs.

In addition, according to sources, the cabinet also approved the creation of an “anti-human smuggling station” by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to deal with human smuggling, as well as the “Hajj Policy 2024.”

In addition to making key decisions regarding what should happen after the November 1 expulsion deadline, the forum also carried out a number of other key decisions relating to the implementation of the decision of the interim government to expel illegal foreigners.

The sources explained that the police, as well as other law enforcement agencies operating in the country, have been directed to apprehend illegal foreigners who are residing there.

In addition, deportation will also be applied to aliens who have been convicted, involved in minor offenses, and who are awaiting trial.

Meanwhile, the heinous crimes committed by illegal foreigners will not be addressed by the expulsion law.

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