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ISLAMABAD: A meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI) Thursday unanimously approved Alternative and Renewable Energy Policy, 2019, as well as decided to share 50 percent collection of windfall levy on crude oil, condensate and natural gas with the concerned province.

The CCI meeting presided over by Prime Minister Imran Khan and attended by provincial chief ministers, while discussing the issue of sharing of windfall levy, decided that 50 percent share of the receipts, collected under the head windfall levy on crude oil, condensate and natural gas under Petroleum Policy, 2012, would be shared with the concerned province.

A separate meeting between four provincial chief ministers and the prime minister was also held ahead of the CCI meeting.

The CCI meeting was given a detailed presentation on demand and supply situation of gas with special reference to future requirements and dwindling domestic gas reserves by the Petroleum Division.

The Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Petroleum put up before the meeting through a presentation gas production, consumption and transmission data from various provinces, and the meeting was informed that the country would face major gas shortage by winter 2021-22.

The CCI was recommended that a national consensus needs to be built for major push for new exploration and production, conservation of domestic gas and rationalization of price mechanisms to avoid impending crises. The meeting was informed that the federal government was organising a summit of industry experts to discuss various options to meet this impending challenge and requested the provinces for their active participation.

The CCI also considered proposed amendment in the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority Ordinance, 2002, as suggested by the Sindh government, and directed the Ministry of Petroleum to explore the possibility of providing the provinces with a suitable mechanism to give their input to the regulatory body. The meeting considered request of the Government of Punjab for handing over control of lower portion of Chashma Right Bank Canal from the Ministry of Water Resources to the Government of the Punjab.

Agreeing to the proposal, the CCI constituted a committee comprising representatives of Indus River System Authority (IRSA), the Government of Punjab, and the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa to work out modalities and finalise bilateral agreement between the two provinces in this regard.

The CCI also decided, in principle, to transfer the existing NCHD and BECS schools, teachers and students from the Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training to the education departments of respective provinces/regions after detailed deliberation on future role and functioning of the National Commission for Human Development and the Basic Education Community Schools.

The meeting decided that the process would be completed before closing of the current financial year.

The CCI directed that the Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training, in consultation with provinces, would formulate a transition and integration plan, which would be presented during the next CCI meeting.

The strategy to combat the Covid-19 was presented before the CCI.

The meeting appreciated the strategy adopted by the government to combat the pandemic.

The meeting approved placement of Annual Reports for the years 2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20 before the Senate and the National Assembly, and reviewed implementation status of decisions of 41st meeting of the CCI.

While discussing recommendations of the Attorney General for Pakistan on Water Accord, 1991, the meeting was informed that a committee comprising technical experts of the federal and the provincial governments had been notified to look into the issue of fair distribution of water among the provinces.

The CCI directed the committee to complete its work in one month.

The meeting was also updated about the progress on installation of Telemetry System.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020