ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Owing to an increasing gap between the subsidized prices offered by USC and the prevailing market prices, Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Friday approved the revision an increase of Rs 150 per 20kg bag of flour, Rs 17 per kg of sugar and Rs 90 per kg ghee.
The ECC meeting was chaired by Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue, Shaukat Tarin. The meeting was attended by Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research, Fakhar Imam; Federal Minister for Energy, Hammad Azhar; SAPM on Finance and Revenue, Dr. Waqar Masood; SAPM on Power and Petroleum, Tabish Gauhar; SAPM on Youth Affairs, Usman Dar, Secretaries of Finance Division, Communication and Industries and Production. Governor State Bank of Pakistan, Chairman PTA and other senior officers also participated in the meeting.
The ECC approved the revision in prices of three essential commodities namely Atta (20 kg bag) to Rs 950, Ghee (per kg) to Rs 260 and Sugar (per kg) to Rs 85 respectively, owing to an increasing gap between the subsidized prices offered by USC and the prevailing market prices.
The Committee deliberated and approved revision in prices of three essential commodities to rationalize provision of subsidies by the Utility Stores Corporation.
The meeting approved the flagship ‘Kamyab Pakistan Program’ besides approving several other projects.
The Kamyab Jawan Programme is a flagship program that would extend micro-loans to entrepreneurs and farmers under “Kamyab Karobar” and “Kamyab Kissan” schemes respectively.
The program would also provide low cost housing loans through NAPHDA while it also includes ongoing skill development program for educational and vocational training under the title “Kamyab Hunarmand”.
The Kamyab Pakistan Program is aimed at extending loans to four million households at the lowest strata, as registered with the National Socio Economic Registry (NSER) of Ehsaas.
Loans worth Rs.0.5 million, Rs.0.150 million and Rs.0.2 million through Micro-Finance Providers for Kamyab Karobar and Kamyab Kissan at 0% mark up will be provided.
The third component of the scheme is introduction of a new tier in Naya Pakistan Low Cost Housing Scheme wherein loans of Rs.2.7 million (for NAPHDA) and Rs.2 million (for Non-NAPHDA) projects will be given at subsidized rates.
The salient features of the Kamyab Pakistan Program include loan size of Rs.150,000 (per crop) for purchase of agricultural inputs. The commutative disbursement under the program would be Rs.1.6 billion over the period of 03 years and it would benefit 30,00,000 families.
The ECC commended all concerned for working out such a detailed program aimed at “bottom-up approach” for reducing poverty as envisaged by the Prime Minister. The Finance Minister stated that the consultative process was followed in working out modalities of the Kamyab Pakistan Program ensuring that all relevant stakeholders are on board and micro-loans shall be disbursed as per the given criteria.
Meanwhile, Secretary, Ministry of Industries and Production presented a summary regarding extension of the Prime Minister’s Relief Package-2020 providing subsidies on five essential commodities from 15th July 2021 to 30th September 2021 till the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system becomes fully operational.
Ministry of Maritime Affairs presented a summary regarding award of Engineering Consultancy Service contract for up-gradation of Port Qasim Authority (PQA) amounting to Rs.86.6 million. The ECC approved the execution of the project.
ECC allowed Post Qasim Authority, Karachi Port Trust and Gwadar Port Authority Boards to transfer their Marine assets to the Pakistan Marine and Shipping Services Company Private Limited (PMSSC), a subsidiary of Pakistan National Shipping Corporation.
The maximum rates to be charged by the Pakistan Marine & Shipping Services Company (PMSSC) from the Public Sector ports & harbours shall be determined from time to time by Ministry of Maritime Affairs through a notification in official gazette.
The Ministry of National Food Security and Research presented a summary regarding procurement of 200,000 cotton bales by TCP to promote cotton production and bring stability in the domestic market. The ECC also approved formation of Cotton Price Review Committee (CPRC) with a mandate to review market price and propose intervention at fortnightly basis.
The ECC also approved a summary by the Ministry of Industries and Production for importing 200,000 metric tons of sugar to build strategic reserves and minimize the role of speculative elements in the domestic market. In case of need more reserves will be built through import, the ECC decided.
ECC approved the amendment in its earlier decision dated February 19, 2021 regarding the “Prime Minister’s” fiscal package for Agriculture in the wake of COVID-19 Kharif”. The package offered subsidy on DAP@1500Rs/acre for cotton and rice crops, during the Kharif Season 2021. Now according to the amendment, the farmers can avail subsidy on any phosphatic fertilizer according to their choice.