ISLAMABAD – The National Assembly was informed on Wednesday that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will visit Turkmenistan on Friday for the inauguration of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project.Parliamentary Secretary for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahzadi Umarzadi Tiwana told the house that the project would help overcome shortage of gas in Pakistan. She also said that there was no ban on domestic gas connections.However, she said that it was a fact that new industrial and commercial gas connections were banned due to huge gap between demand and supply. She said that supply of gas to the domestic users was top priority of the government. Replying to a question, she said that a long-term agreement for sale and purchase of LNG had been signed between Pakistan and Qatar.She said that the agreement would be effective after the approval the Economic Coordination Committee (EEC) of the cabinet. After approval of the committee, price of LNG would be made available, she said.
State Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Sheikh Aftab Ahmad told the house that conversion of existing Karachi-Hyderabad superhighway into six-lane Motorway on built operate transfer basis was an important part of Karachi-Lahore Motorway project and carries high priority for implementation.He said that construction activities were in progress and project was likely to be completed in September 2017.He informed the house that there was no change in the route of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said that an additional route had been included that was Hasanabdal-Mianwali and Dera Ismail Khan for which thirty billion rupees had been allocated.To a question, the state minister said that Gojra-Shorkot and Shorkot-Khanewal sections of the motorway were delayed due to the land disputes in the areas. The government was making all out efforts to complete these two sections at the earliest as now when the land had been acquired and funds were available, he said.