Pakistan facing dire gas shortages

Feb. 5, 2009 at 11:07 AM

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- Pakistan faces a gas deficit of 507 million cubic feet per day in 2010, with forecasts estimating severe shortages in the future, energy officials said.

Pakistan is faced currently with a gas shortage of about 192 million cubic feet per day. For 2010, domestic gas production was estimated at 4.3 billion cfd, while demand is expected to reach 4.8 billion cfd, Pakistan's Daily Times reported Thursday.

Projections from the Pakistani Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources say the natural gas in the country is facing depletion as demand soars from increased use and population growth.

Beyond 2010, Pakistan faces a 3 billion cfd shortage in 2015 and a 6 billion cfd shortage by 2020, based on current resource estimates and considering no new discoveries, the Times said.

Pakistan has moved to shore up this shortfall by negotiating with Iran on the proposed 1,724-mile, $7.4 billion Iran-Pakistan-India natural gas pipeline from the Iranian South Pars gas field.

In terms of domestic production, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources set a goal of drilling 100 new wells every year and modernizing the sector.

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