ISLAMABAD - The existing fuel crisis might last a few days more as the petroleum minister has not announced any immediate relief and has said that it can take 5-8 days to resolve the issue completely.

Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, at a press conference on Friday, said unprecedented increase in the demand of petrol led to the present situation. He said as per the government projection, total demand was 380,000 tons per month, but it rose to 450,000 tons that nobody could expect and a demand and supply gap was created.

He gave different reasons behind increase in the demand for petroleum products and one of them was low difference between the CNG and petrol prices that caused a hike in the demand of petrol in the KP province where gas was available 7 days a week, but most of the people started running their vehicles on petrol.

Abbasi said other reasons were delay in shipment of crude oil and closure of Parco Refinery for 5 days due to tripping. On the other side, the petrol demand that was 12,000 tons daily in December went to 15,000 tons in January.

Panic buying was also a big reason for intensifying fuel crisis as everyone wants to buy more fuel than his requirement. Abbasi said the situation would start getting better soon but he was giving 8 days time just to be on the safe side.

About the LNG, the minister said its supply would start in the end of March. The minister also announced the government’s decision to regulate LPG prices in the wake of the recent situation as the consumers had to pay much inflationary prices for the product and it was responsibility of the government to resolve the issue. Abbasi said the people would not experience such issues in the next winter.