The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet considered and approved proposals submitted by different ministries, in its meeting held on Tuesday at the Prime Minister’s Office, chaired by Finance Minister, Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar.
The ECC approved the Ramzan Relief Package 2017 with subsidies worth Rs. 1,602 million on 19 commodities to provide relief to the general public during the upcoming holy month of Ramzan, after considering a proposal submitted by the Ministry of Industries & Production. These commodities include wheat flour (atta), sugar, ghee, oil, pulses (channa, masoor, moong washed and mash washed), white grams, baisen, dates, rice, squashes, black tea, milk, and spices. The commodities will be sold at subsidized rates across Pakistan through outlets of Utility Stores Corporation (USC). In addition to the relief provided by the Ramzan Package, USC will also reduce prices on over 2,400 other items under different brands from 5% to 10% by obtaining special discount from vendors/suppliers and reducing its own profit margins.
The ECC decided to increase the quantity of urea approved for exports from the existing 0.3 million metric tons to 0.6 million metric tons. ECC also extended the deadline for export of urea from 28th April 2017 to 31st October 2017. These decisions were made by the ECC after considering the proposal of the Ministry of Commerce, based on the recommendations of the Fertilizer Review Committee. The ECC was informed that sufficient production and inventory of urea of domestic consumption is anticipated during Kharif 2017 for allowing export.
On a proposal by the Finance Division, the ECC approved the restoration of import duty and sales tax on import of cotton with effect from 15th July 2017. The decision has been made to boost the confidence of domestic cotton growers during the upcoming sowing season