Oil tankers owners' strike enters 2nd day amid fuel shortage

Paterniano Del Favero
Luglio 25, 2017

Perturbed by issues relating unfair attitude and imposition of unwarranted taxes, All Pakistan Oil Tankers Association (APOTA) announced to go on countrywide strike from Monday evening in protest.

The indefinite strike has suspended supply o f petroleum products from Karachi to the whole country, as the movement of almost 23,000 oil tankers in the country has been halted.

She said that their teams would inspect all vehicles being used for transportation of fuel, however, added that oil tankers' owners are likely to raise hue and cry over authorities' action.

He also said that there has been no meeting between the heads of OGRA, oil marketing companies and the oil-tankers association since the petroleum ministry has handed over such matters to be addressed by the oil regulatory body.

According to one of the managers of a fuel station in Karachi, every petrol pump has a reserve for about two to three days, therefore the oil shortage would affect them from Tuesday onwards.

"We are willing to talk to the protesters but can not compromise on the regulations, which they had to implement by now after the passage of stipulated period", he maintained. Their strict screening has caused worries for the oil tanker owners. Another official of the association, Malik Khuda Baksh has advised the public to not get more fuel filled in their vehicles, than what is required. The oil that leaked from the toppled vehicle attracted people from the surrounding areas who rushed to collect oil.

The oil supply from the metropolis ports Bin Qasim and City Port has been nearly suspended. On this step of Ogra, the oil tankers association is unhappy.

It may be a shocking disclosure that over 7,000 oil tankers were not in compliance of safety standards notified by the regulator but they were still on the roads.

Sources said that all Oil Tankers have been parked in Shireen Jinnah Colony, Karachi; therefore, Oil Supply to across the Country has completed been by halted.

There were around 11,704 oil-caring tankers of which only 38 percent (4,653) met the safety standards of OGRA, NHA and the Explosives Department, the committee was told. They said that there were weaknesses in the system and work had to be done in this regard.

The Senate Standing Committee on Petroleum and Natural Resources was informed that all relevant authorities as well as oil companies were responsible for lack of safety standards at oil tankers.

Senator Nisar Muhammad said OGRA was not playing its due role in getting implemented its rules and there was dire need of appropriate legislation to avoid such incidents in future. "Whatever decisions implemented are made behind closed doors", he claimed.

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