PARCO oil refinery shut down after govt order
The PARCO Refinery – which is the largest facility in Pakistan – shut its operations on Saturday after oil consumption reduced dramatically because of lockdown imposed in view of the coronavirus.
The refinery with a daily production of 100,000 barrels of oil was closed on the directives of petroleum ministry, as it did not have capacity to store the finished products. However, one unit of the facility would be kept operational.
Earlier, the OMCs [oil marketing companies] were directed to cancel the import contracts in the given circumstances.
But this lockdown, which has crippled economic activities around the world, has very positive side-effects on the environment, as satellite images from around the globe show less pollution and improved air quality in different regions.
It was reported earlier that the coronavirus pandemic had reduced commercial, trade and industrial activities in Pakistan like other parts of the world, resulting in a sharp decline in the consumption of petroleum products and LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas).
As such petrol and high speed diesel witnessed a reduction of 40 percent in consumption.
The average monthly consumption of petrol in the country is over 0.2 million tonnes, while it is over 0.625 million tonnes in the case of high speed diesel.
Meanwhile, 490 mmcfd [million cubic feet per day] of LNG is used by the local industries.
According to officials, the power sector is consuming 320 mmcfd of LNG and three instead five tankers would be imported from Qatar due to the reduced consumption. However, the LNG import will be back on track after the situation returns to normal.