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ISLAMABAD: The federal cabinet on Thursday approved the appointment of Aftab Sultan, a retired Police Service of Pakistan officer, as the chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

The cabinet was told that the appointment period of the chairman NAB has been increased to three years which cannot be extended.

The chairman NAB is appointed in consultation with the Leader of the House and the Leader of the Opposition.

The prime minister also directed to form a cabinet committee on the names suggested for the board of directors of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), which will submit its report to the federal cabinet after considering these names.

The federal cabinet meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif through a video link from Lahore.

Federal Finance Minister Miftah Ismail briefed the federal cabinet about the recent increase in the rate of US dollar. He told the meeting that all necessary measures are being taken to reduce the value of the US dollar and stabilize the value of the Pakistani rupee, adding the Pakistani rupee will stabilize against the US dollar next month.

The federal minister of finance further said that the rate of economic growth in the country will be better this fiscal year than last year because the current government has given historical tax incentives to the productive sector, including the agricultural sector+ADs- as a result of which there has been a substantial increase in industrial production and agriculture. The development of the sector is being ensured. These measures are expected to reduce imports, increase employment and increase exports due to local production.

The federal cabinet approved the Multi-Model Air-Road Corridor for Afghan transit trade on the recommendation of the Ministry of Commerce.

It approved the signing of the Trade in Goods Agreement between Pakistan and Turkey on the recommendation of the Minister of Commerce. Pakistan and Turkey announced the signing of this agreement during the Prime Minister’s recent visit to Turkey. Through this agreement, Pakistan and Turkey will get better access to each other’s services and investment sectors. Turkey will provide concessions on 261 tariff lines to Pakistan, including immediate zero rating on 123 items, while Pakistan has offered concessions on 130 tariff lines to Turkey. These items include products from eight major sectors including agriculture, chemical, leather, plastic, rubber, engineering and metal industries.

With the agreement, the volume of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Turkey will increase to five billion dollars.

The prime minister appreciated the efforts of the Ministry of Commerce regarding this agreement.

The federal cabinet approved the transfer of funds to the Government of Afghanistan for the operations, maintenance, and supply of equipment and staff salaries of Pakistani hospitals in Afghanistan.

It has approved the resignation of Chairman Federal Lands Commission Babar Yaqub Fateh Muhammad on the recommendation of the Ministry of Inter-Provincial Coordination.

The federal cabinet approved the decisions taken in the meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee held on 20 July 2022.

Approval of authorization to Trading Corporation of Pakistan for signing agreement with Chinese firms for Import of 200 KMT Urea on G2G Basis, as well as the approval of Lowest Bid offered by MS. Vittera B.V/Marine International at US Dollars 404.86/MT for 120,000MT (5+ACU- MOLSO) on CFR Bulk at 90 days deferred payment basis.

The cabinet was further informed in this regard that while ensuring transparent procurement of urea and wheat, special care was taken to ensure that the best quality can be purchased at the lowest price. In this regard, the relevant authorities rejected the expensive tenders in a timely manner and ensured the low price tenders in a timely manner.

The cabinet appreciated the efforts of the Federal Minister for Commerce, Federal Minister for National Food Security, Federal Secretary for Commerce and Federal Secretary for National Food Security regarding the import of urea from the Chinese firm at a lower price of 100 US dollars per ton.

Furthermore, the cabinet commended the team of the Ministry of National Food Security for handling the tender process as soon as possible at a price of USD 36 per ton less than the requested price regarding the purchase of wheat.

The federal cabinet approved the decision made in the meeting of the Cabinet Committee for Disposal of Legislative Cases on 20 July 2022. It approved Ordinance titled, Government-to-Government (G2G) Commercial Transaction Ordinance 2022.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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