During the latest meeting of the federal cabinet, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Petroleum, Nadeem Babar, alleged that 58 licensed Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) are involved in smuggling and requested the federal government to launch an inquiry against them.
According to the SAPM on Petroleum, only 8 out of the total 66 licensed OMCs account for 92% share of the local oil market, adding that the federal government should start an investigation against the remaining 58 OMCs as they might be keeping themselves afloat through smuggling.
The SAPM added that Petroleum Division had previously failed to initiate inquiry against 58 OMCs to examine whether these companies were surviving on malpractices.
On the other hand, OMCs have unanimously rejected the allegations leveled by the SAPM on Petroleum, Nadeem Babar.
A spokesperson for one OMC questioned if it was fair on the part of a person tasked to advise the Prime Minister on Petroleum to base his input on mere speculations.
A spokesperson for another OMC said as flawed as it is, the report of the inquiry commission referenced by him cites several other reasons, most fundamental of which would be traced back to the SAPM himself.
An advisor of a Karachi-based OMC noted that SAPM on Petroleum will do the incumbent federal government a “huge favor by not opening this can of worms”.