Gas import accord with Russia on cards


KABUL (PAN): In an attempt to keep prices in check, the Ministry of Commerce and Industries plans to import gas and fuel from Russia, an official said on Sunday.

Acting Minister of Commerce Mohammad ShakirKargar would soon lead a delegation to Russia for signing an agreement on gas and fuel imports, his deputy told a news conference in Kabul.

Deputy Minister MuzamilShinwari hoped Russia would sell gas and fuel to energy-deficient Afghanistan at concessional rates. The imports would help keep gas prices at a low and stable level, he hoped.

In recent weeks, gas prices have witnessed a record surge, negating claims by the ministry that the rates will be kept unchanged in the harsh Afghan winter.

With the advent of winter, the price of one kilogram of gas has shot up from 45 afghanis to 75 afghanis, fuelling consumers among ordinary consumers.

Last year, too, consumers complained about increasing gas prices, alleging traders had stockpiled the commodity at the Hairatan port in Balkh province.

But Shinwari insisted government-controlled sale points were still selling gas for 59 afghanis per kilogram. “We have 30 shops and 10 tanks operating in 22 Kabul districts. Residents can go there to purchase gas.”

At a recent meeting, dealers had agreed with the ministry on keeping the whole sale price of one kilogram of gas at 56 afghanis and the retail rate at 60 afghanis until the end of the current month, he added.

In case dealers violated the agreed rates, people should lodge their complaints with the authorities by calling 0798384410, 0787899911 and 07002975120.


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