Document available with Reporters Diary reveals that the Shahbaz government is considering the option of importing Russian crude oil. This was first discussed in Imran Khan’s cabinet and Imran Khan’s government was optimistic about striking a deal with Russia but then Imran Khan was ousted.
According to an official letter, the Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division) has forwarded the letter to the managing directors of Pakistan’s four major oil refineries including the Pak-Arab refinery, National Refinery, Pakistan Refinery Limited and Byco Petroleum Pakistan.
In an official communication, Deputy Director (R-I) Tahir Hussain requested the top four refineries to furnish a detailed analysis with regard to option of crude import from Russia along with analysis regarding the technical suitability of crude oil grades and Transportation/Freight analysis.
The petroleum division has also requested to provide a comparison of the cost of importing Russian crude oil compared to the Middle East.
Interestingly, on June 16, 2022, planning minister Ahsan Iqbal said that if we buy oil from Russia, we will attract international sanctions. He also said that Pakistan’s oil refineries cannot refine Russian crude oil.