Govt amends Petroleum Transportation Bylaw
Kathmandu, January 30
The government has amended the Petroleum Transportation Bylaw and introduced stricter provisions to penalise those found to be engaging in oil pilferage.
The board meeting of Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC), last week, passed the amended draft of the bylaw with a provision to fine transporters up to two times the worth of stolen petroleum products and suspend the transporters and government officials caught stealing the petroleum products.
As per the new bylaw, transporters will be subject to such actions if the quantity of petroleum products they are supplying from the Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) depots to the oil depot of NOC differs by more than 0.2 per cent.
By introducing such provisions, NOC aims to clamp down on theft of petroleum products which has come to light repeatedly in the past. In 2014, Nepal Police had caught a number of petroleum transporters deviously stealing petrol and diesel on their way to NOC’s oil depot from IOC. Police had also arrested few transporters and NOC officials for their involvement in pilferage of 17,000 litres of diesel that same year.
“We are optimistic that the aforementioned provisions will help to control petroleum theft as we will regularly inspect the quantity of petroleum products that transporters deliver to NOC’s oil depots,” Bhanubhakta Khanal, spokesperson for NOC, said. According to him, transporters will be suspended if the
quality of petroleum products they supply to NOC’s petroleum depots vary compared to quality standards of IOC and if transporters are found to be using the oil tankers to supply products other than petroleum.
The new bylaw has also stated that any transporter who wants to associate with NOC to supply petroleum products in Nepal should possess at least five tankers.
Beside these, the Petroleum Transportation Bylaw also has a provision that allows transporters to operate oil tankers with 24-kilolitre capacity to supply petroleum products in the market. As of now, transporters are using 12-kilolitre and 20-kilolitre tankers.
Similarly, the new bylaw has also introduced a provision whereby transporters should mandatorily install security locking system in their oil tankers being used to supply petroleum products in the market.