ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif has constituted a 12-member ministerial committee to explore avenues for development of the mining sector and address the issue of coalminers.
The committee comprises of the following: (i) Minister for Power(convener);(ii) Minister for Industries and Production (member);(iii) Minister for Housing and Works (member);(iv) Minister of State for Petroleum;(v) Minister of State for Finance (member); (vi) Secretary Petroleum Division(Secretary/ member);(vii) Secretary Finance Division (member);(viii) Secretary Power Division;(ix) Secretary Industries and Production (member); (x) Chairman FBR;(xi) Provincial Secretaries of Mines and Mineral Department (member); and (xii) any expert(s) to be co-opted with the approval of the Convener.
The Committee, sources said, has been constituted in the light of discussion between the Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif and coalminers on June 23, 2022.
The Terms of Reference ( ToRs) for the Committee shall be as follows: (i) The Committee shall meet with the representatives of the coalminers and explore the viability of their proposal to grant the mining sector the status of industry and the issue of imposing sales tax on the mining sector;(ii) the Committee shall deliberate on ways and means to optimally utilize local coal for the benefit of the country which may include the possibility of coal gasification;(iii) the Committee shall in consultation with the provinces explore avenues for development of mining sector especially in coal and iron ore besides other potential mineral resources that can expeditiously and optimally be mined and used for the benefit of the country.
The Committee will submit its report on the first ToR, i.e., with regard to granting industry status to mining sector, within 7 days, positively, while it may conclude its recommendations on the second and third ToRs, within three weeks.
Meanwhile Prime Minister has also constituted a committee comprising Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Musadik Malik, Advisor to PM on Establishment, Ahad Cheema, Secretary, Establishment Division, Secretary Power Division and Secretary Industries and Production to explore avenues for strengthening and capacity building of Ministries/ Divisions.
The Committee shall assess the need for strengthening and capacity building of the Ministries/ Divisions by recruiting highly skilled human resource/ sectoral experts. The Committee shall examine the existing policies available for recruitment of highly skilled human resource/ sectoral experts in the Ministries/ Divisions and suggest modifications/ changes, if so required.
The Committee shall recommend way forward for strengthening and capacity building of the Ministries/ Divisions which should include a time bound framework for recruitment of highly skilled human resource/ sectoral experts within Ministries/ Divisions. The Committee will submit its report within one week.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022