Azerbaijan LNG purchase: Shahid Khaqan quits ECC membership in protest

PML (N) leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi addresses a press conference at the National Press Club in Islamabad on August 2, 2023.  - APP
PML (N) leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi addresses a press conference at the National Press Club in Islamabad on August 2, 2023. – APP
  • Khakan is in favor of buying LNG through a private company.
  • The politician opposes purchases through the state-owned PLL.
  • The Petroleum Department refuses to prepare the summary as directed by them.

Former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has resigned from the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) due to disagreements over the purchase of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Azerbaijan through an intergovernmental approach. geo news Told through sources.

The sources also revealed that Abbasi expressed his opposition to receiving LNG from Azerbaijan through the state-owned Pakistan LNG Limited (PLL). Instead, he advocated for a private Pakistani company to handle the procurement of the LNG cargo.

According to sources, the senior Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader was of the view that a private entity should be responsible for the procurement.

According to sources, the Petroleum Department had refused to prepare the necessary summary as directed by Abbasi.

The PML-N veteran’s resignation comes after Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s recent visit to Azerbaijan, during which discussions were held to enhance cooperation in various fields, including the supply of LNG.

Abbasi’s resignation from the ECC highlights the difference of opinion within the government purchase of LNG from Azerbaijan.

In a meeting between the premier and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, it was agreed that Azerbaijan would assist Pakistan in meeting its energy needs by providing assistance in the oil and gas sector.

As per the agreement, Azerbaijan is committed to supply LNG at a concessional price to Pakistan on a monthly basis. Earlier this week, the federal cabinet had also approved the agreement.

“This is the second major achievement for Pakistan in meeting its energy requirements after recently receiving shipments crude oil from russia,” read the release.

Under the agreement, Pakistan will receive one LNG cargo per month from next month at concessional rates. According to the PM Office, the Prime Minister has been working on a deal with Azerbaijan for the last six months.

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