The All Pakistan Petroleum Dealers’ Association (APPDA) has announced that the petrol stations across Pakistan will be going on a strike and remain closed on 25th November, 2021.
The petrol pump owners are asking the government to increase the profit margin by 6%. The current commission on petrol is 2.5% which was set back in 2012. Information Secretary of the Association, Nauman Ali Butt mentioned that the government is not meeting their demands. The spokesperson further said that the government has been employing delaying tactics and has avoided concrete discussions to talk about the proposed profit margin increase and that the association will not talk to the government now.
In a press conference held by APPDA, Mr Butt said that there will be no leniency until their margin of commission has been hiked. He further said,
“We have no other option but to go on strike as the government has failed to meet the November 17 deadline to address our demands,”
APPDA Chairman Abdul Sami said,
“Margins are fixed in absolute terms and have been increased by a few paisas based on CPI. Therefore, sustainable operation of pumps is not viable anymore, a situation which may lead to closures if margins are not revised upward by at least 6pc of the sale price,”
The Association previously wanted to go on a strike on 5th of November but decided to postpone it in hopes of a progress on the issue after a meeting was held with the government team including different stakeholders like OGRA, and the Ministry of Energy including Director General Oil as well as Dr Arshad Mahmood who is the Secretary for the Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division), and the Economic Coordination Committee.
It was mentioned during the press conference that only emergency vehicles like ambulances will be getting the fuel during the strike. Gilgit Baltistan gas stations will also be joining APPDA in the strike.
Albeit it is a one day strike but it might cause panic buying among consumers. Similar trends have been seen in the past not only in Pakistan but worldwide. Motorists in the UK went into a frenzy and started hoarding up the fuel when there was a shortage due to delivery chain supply a couple of months ago.