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ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has approved award of two tenders with the first one for import of 550,000 metric tons of wheat and the other for the import of 100,000 metric tons of urea to build strategic reserves for the fiscal year 2021-22 Rabi season.

The meeting presided over by Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin considered a number of proposals moved by various ministries for approval from the ECC, including a summary of Ministry of Industries and Production for continuation of the Prime Minister’s relief package-2020 for provision of five essential items on subsidised rates being expired on 30th September 2021.

The ECC granted extension for one-month with a direction for submission of a detailed summary before the ECC, keeping in view the international price hike in essential food commodities.

The ECC approved the summary moved by the Ministry of National Food, Security and Research (NFS&R) regarding award of the fifth international wheat tender to import 550,000 metric tons (after matching process) of wheat for the fiscal year 2021-22, and on Ministry of Industries and Production’s proposal approved a tender for import of 100,000 metric tons of urea for building strategic reserves of urea fertiliser during the Rabi season fiscal year 2021-22.

Wheat import exempted from PPRA rules

On a summary moved by the Power Division regarding quarterly tariff adjustments of K-Electric, the ECC decided that the Power Division may approach the NEPRA to review its earlier decision on the issue and present an updated summary before the ECC for consideration. The Power Division tabled another summary regarding levy of sales tax on the subsidy granted by the federal government to the DISCOs. After seeking input from all concerned, the ECC decided that the matter may be referred to the Law Division for seeking opinion and legal interpretation may be presented before the Committee for further deliberations. The ECC also approved a proposal of the Power Division regarding approval of payment mechanism for TNB Liberty Power Limited.

The ECC approved the proposal as part of settlement with other relevant IPPs. The ECC considered and approved the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications proposal with respect to revised budget estimates for the fiscal year 2020-21 and fiscal year 2021-22. The meeting also approved the Ministry of Interior’s proposal seeking a Technical Supplementary Grant (TSG) amounting to Rs83.3 million for procuring services from the NADRA regarding project for automation of Power of Attorney (POA) for Overseas Pakistanis. The ECC accorded approval with the direction that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Interior may hold a joint consultative session to work out modalities in this regard.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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