Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) President Hasnain Khurshid Ahmad has strongly opposed the government plan to introduce the proposed policy of National Weighted Average Cost of Gas (WACOG).
He termed that the move is a clear violation of article 158-A, of the constitution of the country and tantamount to usurping rights of the provinces that are rich in natural resources and gas.
The SCCI president urged the government to review the proposed policy and to ensure protection of constitutional rights and avoid putting additional burden on provinces with abundant natural resources.
In addition Mr.Khurshid while talking to a delegation of industrialists here on Wednesday informed that the federal government is planning to pass a bill introducing an average national basket price for natural gas i.e Weighted Average Cost of Gas (WACOG) by moving away from ring-fenced pricing and supply of local gas and imported liquefied natural gas (LNG) to various consumer categories.
Participants of the meeting told that government is introducing a bill in the parliament for weighted average cost of gas wherein all the prices will be based on average cost of gas i.e. average cost of natural gas plus imported gas, which is against the Constitution of Pakistan and also not in the interest of net gas producing provinces.
The SCCI president quoted under Article 158 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan which clearly states that “the Province in which a well-head of natural gas is situated shall have precedence over other parts of Pakistan in meeting the requirements from that well head.”
As per the Article 158, Mr Khurshid said it is the ultimate right of the province to receive the gas at a cheaper rate as the gas producing provinces.