NOC expects fuel supply to ease

NOC expects fuel supply to ease

The Nepal Oil Corporation on Wednesday said fuel supply constraints would ease in the Kathmandu Valley from next week.

With 19,000kl of petroleum products already in stock, the NOC has received 3,200kl fuel in the last three days after the Birgunj-Raxaul border—the country’s major trading route—reopened on Friday.

The border obstructions had caused severe fuel crisis in the country.

While easy supply of petrol, diesel and kerosene is expected from next week, it will take some time before supply constraints on liquefied petroleum gas are eased due to its increased demand in the Indian market, said the state-oil monopoly.

NOC Managing Director Gopal Bahadur Khadka said the Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) provided 1,500 kilolitres of petroleum products—petrol, diesel, kerosene and aviation turbine fuel—from its Raxaul depot on Wednesday evening. These consignments were expected to reach Kathmandu and other cities by Wednesday night. The daily demand of petrol and diesel in the country stands at 1,700kl.

On Monday, the country received 368kl of petroleum products from the Raxaul depot and the quantity was increased four-fold to 1,310kl on Tuesday. The Raxaul depot fulfils 65 percent fuel needs of the country.

Recently, India’s Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, during his meeting with Nepali Ambassador to India Dip Kumar Upadhyaya, had said India was ready to boost fuel supply as per Nepal’s need.

“If we continue to receive fuel in similar quantities, the market will normalise by next week,” Khadka said. “We are also holding talks with IOC officials to provide fuel on regular basis.”

In the wake of acute shortages of fuel, the NOC had implemented quota system on fuel distribution.

“For the next one week, we will be supplying fuel to the private vehicles based on their registration numbers,” Khadka said. “Thereafter we will scrap the quota system.”
As far as LPG is concerned, the NOC said it is not sure when it could be made easily available to customers.

Currently, under the directive of the Ministry of Supplies, LPG bottling plants have been distributing half-filled LPG cylinders (each weighing 7.1kg). Khadka said the IOC was yet to increase the quantity of LPG bullets. The IOC is currently supplying less than half of LPG demand, NOC officials said.

Source: The Kathmandu Post