Pakistan hopes to save $3 billion in new gas deal with Qatar

Monday, March 1, 2021 | The Associated Press

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan’s landmark, new deal with Qatar for liquefied natural gas at lower rates will save Islamabad a total of about $3 billion over the next 10 years, an adviser to the country’s prime minister said Monday.

The agreement, signed last Friday, will save the state $317 million annually due to the reduced price of the gas compared to the 2015 agreement between the two countries, according to Nadeem Babar, Prime Minister Imran Khan's adviser on petroleum.

This “will result in the lowering of the overall cost of liquefied natural gas” imported from Qatar, Babar said.

Under the agreement, which comes into effect in January 2022, Pakistan will import liquefied natural gas — or LNG — from Qatar at a reduced price of about 31%, compared to the previous agreement signed in 2015 for 15 years. At the time, Islamabad's agreeing to pay a higher price had drawn criticism from experts.

Many Pakistanis have been rallying, angry over long power cuts in the summer and shortages of natural gas in winter, to demand an uninterrupted supply of electricity and gas. Khan's government has said it was trying its best to overcome an energy shortfall through different measures.

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