HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: Secretary at the Ministry of Commerce and Supplies (MoIC) Lal Mani Joshi urged all bottling plants and dealers of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to end the trend of black-marketing.
Speaking at a programme organised by Gas Dealers’ Association of Nepal he said that consumers are facing problems due to the unethical and profit-oriented behaviour of bottling plants and dealers.
He also directed Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) to introduce a single brand –– NOC –– for LPG cylinders to ensure the
consumer’s right to exchange cooking gas cylinders without any hassles.
The ministry along with the Office of the Prime Minister has already directed the corporation to rebrand around 4.5 million cooking gas cylinders under
the ‘NOC’ brand. But, none of the concerned agencies have shown any interest in executing the directive.
In the programme, secretary Joshi also directed Nepal Oil Corporation to complete the distribution of consumer cards soon. NOC had assigned the job of distributing consumer cards to Gas Dealers’ Association of Nepal (GDAN) in April and had directed the association to complete the distribution of consumer cards within 15 days.
However, the card distribution process was disrupted due to a dispute between Gas Dealers’ Association of Nepal and bottling plants.
Not a single consumer card has been verified by bottling plants so far, said general secretary at Gas Dealers’ Association of Nepal Maheshwar Prasad Shrestha, adding that dealers have taken some 200,000 cards from dealers.
Secretary Joshi today directed Nepal Oil Corporation to initiate action against those bottling plants that have not supported the government’s move of distributing consumer cards.
Around 10 bottling plants have not taken any initiative of verifying dealers to issue consumer cards, according to Shrestha. “Only those bottling plants that have been verified can issue consumer cards but dealers of around 10 bottling plants are yet to be verified by the concerned plants.”
Nepal Oil Corporation has been saying that it will differentiate domestic and industrial use of cooking gas after the
introduction of consumer cards. It recently also directed all gas bottling plants to differentiate the colour of the cylinders for
In the programme, student leaders from different political parties urged the government to end the existing chaotic situation in LPG business. Representatives of student unions also asked Nepal Oil Corporation to ensure transparency in the cooking gas business so that consumers do not have to face any problems in the future.