Quite alarming, indeed


A report in an Urdu daily that the federal government has started working on levying a new surcharge on POL products in the ratio of Rs two to three per litre is quite alarming indeed. Report said that the new surcharge is being levied to raise funds for installation of new modern plants in the oil refineries of the country. Quite obviously, this will be in addition to weekly fluctuation in POL products prices and be a regular hit on the heads of the consumers like other taxes and duties they are already paying on all POL products. This is another method to which the cash-starved federal govt is going to resort to.
The govt is taxing people more and more instead of taking some austerity measures to check and control ever mounting oil import bill which has already reached the staggering level of more 13 billion dollars annually. This is so because the country is meeting as high as 85 percent of its requirements through oil imports. This itself is very alarming situation also. A country almost entirely dependent on oil imports cannot be considered independent and sovereign in any respect.
In view of this alarming situation, there is dire need for adopting some fuel saving measures on top most priority basis both in the public and private sectors to ensure that not only oil import bill do not go further higher than this level but also it is curtailed and brought down to the reasonable level.
The federal and provincial governments have huge fleets of vehicles including pretty large number of luxury cars which consume much oil. Increasing number of vehicles on the roads in the private sector add to the oil consumption considerably. We go on consuming more and more oil ignoring the bitter fact that most of it is imported and also there being no consideration to go for fuel saving.