Oil shortage ends after NOC pacifies dealersA sudden gasoline shortage that led to long queues forming in front of filling stations for the past few days in the Kathmandu Valley has ended with Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) boosting deliveries.
A sudden gasoline shortage that led to long queues forming in front of filling stations for the past few days in the Kathmandu Valley has ended with Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) boosting deliveries. The state-owned oil monopoly said it had increased supply by almost double.
The scarcity appeared after oil dealers in the Kathmandu Valley, Nuwakot, Dhading and Kavrepalanchok refused to receive deliveries from NOC on Tuesday complaining that it had been delaying increasing compensation for shrinkage loss.
Later the same day, they called off their protest programme after NOC agreed to formed a study committee under Acting Director Deepak Baral to address the issue. Deliveries resumed after the agreement.
NOC Spokesperson Sitaram Pokharel said they distributed 825 kilolitres of petrol on Friday. According to him, NOC had issued 700 kilolitres on Wednesday and 710 kilolitres on Thursday. “Compared to the normal daily requirement of 450 kilolitres, we have increased supply significantly to meet the surge in demand in the past few days,” Pokharel said.
NOC attributed the shortage to panic buying even though it held adequate stocks as memories of recent hardships are fresh in the public mind. The corporation has boosted the storage capacity at its Thankot depot from 1,100 kilolitres to 5,310 kilolitres, enough to meet the requirement of the Valley and adjoining areas for 10-11 days. “People now do not need to stock extra fuel,” Pokharel said.
Gasoline dealers have a long-standing complaint against NOC over the inadequate compensation it has been providing for shrinkage loss.
NOC provides an extra 5 litres for every 1,000 litres of petrol and an extra 2.6 litres for every 1,000 litres of diesel as compensation for shrinkage loss. Dealers are dissatisfied with the compensation amount saying that shrinkage loss comes to 90 litres for every 4,000 litres.
Achyut Bahadur Khadka, president of the Bagmati Petroleum Dealers’ Association, said they had resumed fuel supply from Wednesday. “We have given the NOC management a 15-day ultimatum to address our demand,” Khadka said.