Pakistan’s monthly petroleum consumption surged to an all-time high in October 2021, second only to the monthly sales of May 2018, amid growing economic activity and increasing oil prices. PSO posted the highest monthly sales, followed by SHEL.
In October of FY22, total petroleum sales (including lubricants) swelled to 1.99 million tons against 1.70 million tons in October FY21, posting year-on-year (YoY) growth of 17 percent. Among the POL products, high-speed diesel (HSD) made the highest contribution of 0.84 million tons, experiencing a YoY growth of 25 percent. This sales volume is the highest in any month of the current fiscal year and is second only to May 2018 figures.
According to Arif Habib’s petroleum report, this massive increase in sales volume is due to:
- Substantial increase in the demand for HSD in the agriculture and transportation sector.
- Boost in economic activity as businesses ramp up production due to increased local demand and higher trade activity.
- Significant increase in the sales volume of automobiles, posting a growth of 84 percent in the first quarter of the current fiscal year against the same period last year.
- Improved border management to curb the sales of smuggled fuel.
- Increased reliance on fossil fuel-based power plants for electricity generation.
Among the OMCs, PSO posted the highest sales, reporting year-on-year growth of 35 percent. SHEL sales figures grew by 22 percent in October 2021 against the same month last year. However, not all OMCs were able to increase their petroleum sales. APL and HASCOL sales declined year-on-year by 3 percent and 73 percent, respectively.
It is to be noted that petroleum sales increased even when POL prices reach historic highs.