Good news about the investment by foreign companies in LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) was provided to the Parliamentary body. The said investment will be bringing a roughly estimated foreign direct investment of $500 million and will require no financial subsidy & off take guarantees from the government.
Members, in a meeting of National Assemble Standing Committee on Maritime Affairs, inquired the details about the 2 LNG terminals. They were informed that the land only did cost $10 million. The basic purpose of importing LNG is to substitute it for furnace oil. Reason for substitution is that the furnace oil is expensive. Also the use of gas will increase the efficiencies of power sector as well as reduce the carbon emission. The government has committed to pay $250,000 per day per terminal for rental and also the ReGasification charges would be costing some $420 billion to the government over 15 years. However the government was not paying anything for rental or ReGasification charges or any off take guarantees for the new LNG terminals. The committee members have also noticed that the terms on which the new terminals are being installed have been an excellent initiatives of the MOMA (Ministry of Maritime Affairs).
MOMA is also participating in the International Maritime Organization (IMO) event
Ministry officials informed media that it is the first ever event in the history of Pakistan where a federal minister has addressed 88 country’s representatives and has also solicited the case of Pakistan in a effective manner.
Members were informed by Rizwan Ahmed that Pakistan is going to appoint a permanent representative in IMO. Taking part in the elections in 2021 is also planned. The meeting also discussed the significance of the country in the global and regional maritime affairs.
The committee members were also briefed about the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission conference held in Pakistan and hosted by MOMA. The initiatives taken for bolster deep fishing would increase Pakistan’s presence in the global sea food market as well.
Linking different nations in Central and South Asia and middle East through sea route Pakistan can provide a new dimension to the international maritime trade
Members were curious about the rapidly decreasing fish stocks in Pakistan. They were informed that all the management and regulation of local fishing boats is being handled by the provincial fishing department but there is no mechanism for monitoring the fishing activities of the local fishing boats. Participants were briefed that major fishing boats were not sustainable. Regulations and imposition proper fishing gear is required for controlling the matter.
Members identified that major cause for the stock depletion is irregular fishing and therefore the fishing policy should be properly reviewed. Fishermen should be properly educated and guided for controlling stock depletion. Members also suggested that tracking devices should be installed on the boats. Other recommendations included imposing ban on the irregular fishing gear for controlling the rapid stock depletion. It was also suggested to consider the concerns of indigenous fishermen while registering the boats.