Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) has increase liquefied petroleum (LP) gas supply quota for bottlers by 4,000 tons to 29,000 tons for the month of January.
NOC took the decision as per the government´s direction to ease supply of LP gas cylinders in the market.
Two weeks ago, NOC had increased supply quota for bottlers by 3,000 tons.
According to NOC officials, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has already accepted NOC´s proposal to raise LP gas supply quota.
“We will be supplying additional 4,000 tons of LP gas in the market in January,” Chandika Prasad Bhatta, managing director of NOC, told Republica. “The quota has been raised as part of our effort to improve availability of LP gas in the market. We will lower supply quota to 22,000 tons in February.”
NOC had sent a proposal to IOC for the supply of an additional 4,000 tons of LP gas two weeks ago.
Meanwhile, Bhatta criticized the government for its failure to take action against LP gas dealers and bottlers who are creating artificial shortage in the market. “We were compelled to raise the quota as the government couldn´t take any action against LP gas bottlers and dealers, who have created artificial shortage, to press NOC for raising their supply quota,” he added.
During market inspections, government officials last week found bottlers readily sending new cylinders to the market, but not refilling old cylinders. A new depot of Sugam Gas Industry in New Baneshwar was returning consumers even though it had 140 cylinders in stock.
It, however, was providing LP gas to consumers willing to buy new cylinders. But government took no action against Sugam Gas Industry which is promoted by Shiva Ghimire. Meanwhile, Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas of India Dharmendra Pradhan met with Minister for Commerce and Supplies Sunil Bahadur Thapa in New Delhi on Monday. In the meeting, he vowed to supply LP gas to Nepal as per the demand.
According to news reports, Pradhan also agreed to send a technical team to Nepal to study the feasibility of setting up an LP gas and natural gas pipeline between Nepal and India.