ECC okays Rs12.3bn subsidy for urea imports

ECC okays Rs12.3bn subsidy for urea imports
ECC okays Rs12.3bn subsidy for urea imports

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Thursday approved expanding the Kamyab Pakistan Programme (KPP) throughout the country and also cleared a Rs18 billion supplementary grant for Local Bodies’ elections.

The meeting of the ECC presided over by Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin also approved Rs12.345bn subsidy for import of about 100,000 tonnes of fertiliser to be shared on a 50:50 basis by the federal and the provincial governments.

The ECC approved a summary presented by the Ministry of Industries and Production regarding uninterrupted supply of oxygen gas in the country for medical purposes and approved duty and tax exemption to products and goods i.e oxygen gas, oxygen gas cylinder and cryogenic oxygen tanks for the health sector up to June to cope with the fifth wave of Covid in the country.

The meeting approved the expansion of KPP throughout the country at the request of the Ministry of Finance from selected districts at present. The meeting was told that about Rs1.4bn loans had been disbursed in the first quarter of KPP operations. Approves Rs18bn grant for LG polls; duty waivers for oxygen products; expands KPP across country The loans were currently available in Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Kashmir, the six poorest districts of Punjab and two in Sindh.

The districts of Punjab like Rajanpur, D.G.Khan, Muzaffargarh, Khanewal and Rahimyar Khan while Tharparkur and Umerkot are in Sindh.
Launched in September last year, the KPP entailed disbursement of microcredit loans to marginalised segments of society through a series of schemes like Kamyab Karobar, Kamyab Kissan, Naya Pakistan Low-Cost Housing, Kamyab Hunarmand and Sehatmand Pakistan components.
It was announced at the launch that the programme would be extended to the whole of Pakistan eventually. Because of IMF objections, the size of the programme for the first year had been reduced to about Rs156bn from originally envisaged Rs315bn while the chunk of subsidy had also been reduced from Rs21bn to about Rs10-12bn.

The ECC after deliberation on a summary presented by the Ministry of Industries and Production on fixing of imported Urea price and approved the cost estimates for import of Urea amounting to Rs12.345 billion on a cost-sharing basis among the Federal and Provincial Governments on a 50:50 basis.

The meeting also approved a series of supplementary grants to ministries of defence, housing & works and aviation including a Rs18.365bn grant to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for holding local government elections and revision of electoral rolls. The grants also include defence credit line of $50 million to Sri Lanka to enhance bilateral security cooperation. The ECC also approved a summary of the Ministry of Industries and Production on grant of arrival/priority berthing to urea vessels at the Karachi Port Trust of urea vessels being imported by the Trading Corporation of Pakistan in view of urgent fertilizer requirements.

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