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LOW Source:
Pakistan Deaths
Pakistan Cases
0.82% positivity

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Friday allowed revocation of Neelum Jhelum Surcharge (NJS) of 10 paisa per KHW with immediate effect, and approved an increase in subsidised ghee price at the Utility Stores Corporation (USC) by Rs25 per kg.

The ECC meeting presided over by the Minister for Finance and Revenue, Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, was submitted various proposals by the Ministry of Industries and Production to rationalise the prices of wheat flour, sugar and ghee, following increase in prices of these items in the international market.

An official of the Ministry of Industries said the ministry was allowed to effect Rs25 increase in the ghee per kg price at USC – from Rs175 to Rs200 per kg.

The ECC, after a detailed discussion, approved only partial rationalization, and directed to provide maximum relief to consumers despite a significant price differential between subsidised rates offered by the USCs and the prevailing prices in the domestic market. This is in compliance with the Prime Minister’s Relief Package-2020 to provide basic commodities at affordable rates through a network of Utility Stores across Pakistan. In response to a summary of the Ministry of Energy regarding revocation of Neelum Jhelum (NJ) surcharge @ 10 paisa per KWH electricity consumers; the ECC approved its revocation with immediate effect.

The ECC also approved another summary by the Ministry of Industries and Production for outstanding payment to M/s Ocean Wide Shipping Services amounting to US $0.58 million from the Pakistan Steel Mills to fulfill a contractual obligation for transportation of coal during 2010.

The ECC approved recommendations as endorsed by the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) regarding taxation issues of the telecom sector in response to a summary presented by the secretary, Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication. The ECC constituted a sub-committee on October 20, 2020, under the Chairmanship of the Adviser to the Prime Minister Dr Ishrat Husain, for due deliberation. The sub-committee presented its recommendations before the ECC. The ECC considered a summary by the Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division) regarding tax on payments to an offshore supply contractor to meet the contractual obligation and constituted a sub-committee comprising Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Petroleum, the secretary Law Division, the secretary Power Division and the FBR, with a direction to evaluate the proposal and present workable recommendations before the forum for consideration.

The ECC meeting also approved the Ministry of National Food Security and Research’s summary regarding a mechanism for disbursement of subsidies in line with the prime minister’s fiscal package for agriculture in the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The summary was approved by the ECC for timely disbursements of subsidies to the provinces by the Ministry of NFS&R subject to clearance by the Finance Division.

The ECC also considered and approved a summary regarding government’s sovereign guarantee for a PSDP project titled National Electronics Complex of Pakistan (NECOP), executed by the National Engineering and Scientific Commission. The ECC approved technical supplementary grants of; (i) Rs550 million for Special Communications Organization (SCO) from the Ministry of Information and Technology during the FY 2020-21; (ii) Rs200 million was approved (out of total allocation of Rs362.239 million) to Special Technology Zones (STZA) during the current financial year; (iii) Rs109 million to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MoIB) to clear outstanding bills related to media campaigns on behalf of the Ehsaas Programme during FY 2019-20. Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam, Federal Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar, Adviser to the PM on Institutional Reforms and Austerity Dr Ishrat Hussain, SAPM on Revenue Dr Waqar Masood, SAPM on Power Tabish Gauhar, SAPM on Petroleum Nadeem Babar, and Board of Investment (BOI) Chairman Atif Bokhari attended the meeting.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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