Pakistan is to ask Kuwait for a supply of oil at "subsidised" rates during the upcoming three-day visit of the Kuwaiti amir, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al Jaber Al-Sabah, beginning May 19, according to media reports.
"Kuwait and three other oil-rich Gulf states - Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar - had assured oil subsidies following the Oct 8 devastating earthquake in Pakistan," English-language newspaper The Nation quoted a government official as saying Monday.
The 7.6 magnitude earthquake in parts of Pakistan-administered Kashmir and Northwest Frontier Province (NWFP) killed an estimated 75,000 people and rendered over 3.5 million homeless.
President Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz would make the formal request to the Amir of Kuwait during their talks, which are also expected to focus on regional security, the latest developments in the Middle Eastern region, the Pakistan-India peace process and the ongoing war against terrorism.
Pakistan's total crude oil requirement is about 240,000 barrels per day. Of this, around 177,000 barrels are imported and the rest is produced locally.
Saudi Arabia is the major oil supplier to Pakistan, with about 110,000 barrels of crude oil supply per day, while Dubai and Qatar export 60,000 barrels.
Saudi Arabia also supplied oil to Pakistan at highly subsidised rates for over five years to ward off the impact of sanctions imposed by the US, Japan and western countries to discipline the country for its nuclear detonations in May 1998.