ISLAMABAD - Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) has called upon the government to urgently lift ban on commercial and domestic new gas connections as the business community and the people are facing great difficulties due to continuous ban.

Muhammad Shakeel Munir, President, ICCI said that the business community and the people were facing great difficulties due to continuous ban on the provision of new gas connection while the backlog of the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) was also increasing due to this situation. He said that the government should urgently lift ban on commercial and domestic new gas connections.

He said that the ban on new gas connection was imposed in December 2021, which has not been lifted as yet due to which large number of people were facing great problems and the backlog has reportedly reached over 2.8 million applications. He said that even those seeking gas connections in the urgent category by depositing an urgent fee of Rs25,000 were not getting new gas connections, which was very unfortunate. He said that the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) had also ordered the Ministry of Petroleum to immediately withdraw the ban on new gas connections across the country and start their installation, but PAC order has not been implemented so far. He called upon the government to give a serious consideration to this important issue as many members of the business community and citizens in Islamabad were facing difficulties due to the continuous ban on new gas connections.

Jamshaid Akhtar Sheikh Senior Vice President, Muhammad Faheem Khan Vice President ICCI and Fayyaz Abbasi, Co-Chairman, Traders Welfare Association, F-10 Markaz, Islamabad said that gas was an important requirement of business community and the citizens, but continuous ban on its provision was creating frustration in them. They said that the gas becomes more important in the winter season and demanded that all those applicants who have been issued the demand notices, should be provided with the new gas connection and ban on new gas connections should be lifted as soon as possible.