The Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources has unveiled plans to implement a massive project connecting homes with piped cooking gas throughout the Kingdom.
The ministry has completed a study on the subject and submitted it for approval to the Supreme Economic Council, the Kingdom’s main decision-making body in economic matters, according to ministry sources. The study focused on how viable it was to implement the scheme in Riyadh.
Piped household gas connections was the major topic of discussion during a meeting involving Assistant Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources for Petroleum Affairs Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman and senior ministry officials with members of the Shoura Council’s committee of economic and energy affairs on Tuesday. Shoura Deputy Chairman Muhammad Al-Jafri and Assistant Deputy Chairman Fahhad Al-Hamad also attended the meeting, which was held to discuss the ministry’s annual report, Al-Eqtisadiah business daily reported.
Referring to piped household gas connections, the sources said the ministry contacted a number of agencies to explore the prospect of conducting investments in this field. They also pointed out that the project requires further research and economic feasibility studies.
Speaking on the occasion, Prince Abdul Aziz praised the role played by the Shoura Council in serving the nation and people. “The Shoura’s activities are instrumental in improving the performance of various government departments and agencies. Sustained work to highlight the Kingdom’s efforts to develop the oil industry is also essential,” he added.
The committee, headed by Shoura member Osama Qabbani, discussed various aspects of the annual report with the ministry officials. Prince Abdul Aziz and the ministry officials replied to a number of queries raised by the Shoura members. One member asked about the large number of complaints received by the committee with regard to the crisis in the construction sector due to a shortage of cement.
The officials disclosed the ministry has taken a string of measures to address the problems facing the sector. Punitive actions have been taken against those involved in creating artificial shortage of this major construction material through price fixing and black marketing. While noting that the Kingdom enjoys self-reliance in the case of construction materials, they pointed out the ministry is striving to check some cement factories’ tendency not to use their maximum production capacity, in addition to monopolizing the product in some regions.
The officials also briefed the Shoura members on the Kingdom’s vast potential and rich resources in the mineral sector. The Kingdom’s investments in this vital sector have reached SR 200 billion. Referring to the monitoring of investments in the mineral sector and ensuring the commitment of investors in protecting the Kingdom’s mineral resources and environment in various regions, they said inspection squads from the ministry are touring such mineral sites in order to ensure they are strictly adhering to the ministry’s rules and regulations.