At least six oil ships are anchored or adrift at Port Qasim while they wait to be unloaded, making Pakistan’s fuel problem even worse. The surge in imports is putting pressure on the port’s handling capacity.
While the local industry relies on petroleum products, there has been a bottleneck in the flow of them.
Four of these six oil ships are owned by Pakistan State Oil (PSO), one each by Shell Pakistan and Total. They carry diesel, gasoline, and furnace oil, among other things. Other people are also asking port authorities to move quickly and let the oil ships dock.
Port Qasim’s docks can’t handle or dock more than 12-14 cargoes a month, so they can’t be used for that. This means that the Karachi Port Trust has three oil piers, each with a capacity of eight million tonnes of oil per year. The FOTCO terminal in Port Qasim, on the other hand, has a total of nine million tonnes of liquid cargo per year.
A lot of dealers and farmers are said to be stockpiling diesel because the fuel price is going to go up when the government gets rid of fuel subsidies in exchange for foreign investment.
On the other hand, the country also needs furnace oil to keep power plants running to make electricity because gas has been hard to come by. The government has a power shortfall of more than 7,000 MW.