ECC approves Rs 2bn Ramazan Package for essential commodities

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) on Friday approved the Ramazan Relief Package-2014 amounting to Rs 2 billion on essential commodities being sold at Utility Stores Corporation (USC) outlets. The Ramazan Package 2014 would be effective from June 23.
The ECC met under the chairmanship of Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar approved the subsidy to be provided on about 17 essential items at USC outlets across the country during coming Ramazan.
The subsidy wheat flour is Rs 6 per kilogramme (kg), while on ghee and oil a subsidy of Rs 10 per kg would be provided.
Similarly on gram, gram pulse, gram flour, dates, rice, broken rice, squashes, syrups, milk (tetra pack), spices pulses moong, mash and masoor a subsidy of Rs 10 per kg each would be provided, whereas Rs 50 per kg subsidy would be provided on black tea.     
Earlier the ECC was informed by Secretary Petroleum and Natural Resources recently the Mari Petroleum Company Ltd (MPCL) has discovered additional gas in Pirkoh formation of Mari D&P Lease area and based on the initial test results and broad assessment of reservoirs size, approximately 6 million cubic feet per day (MMCFD) is projected to be available for supply at its natural specs (raw gas) and pressure for an estimated initial period of 18 months.
The ECC gave approval to the proposal 6 MMCFD gas, which will be available for an estimated period of 18 months, to be allocated to Thermal Power Station Guddu (TPSG) of Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) being in the vicinity of MPCL’s field and capable to off-take the gas readily.
The ECC also approved the summary of Ministry of Water and Power for issuance of sovereign guarantee by Ministry of Finance in respect of indicative terms and conditions for syndicated term finance facility up to Rs.31 billion for the power sector.
The ECC considered the summary of the Ministry of Water and Power regarding approval of Policy Framework for private sector transmission lines projects.
The salient features of the policy are offering transmission system projects to the private sector on Built, Own, Operate and Transfer (BOOT) model. The policy covers transmission lines and grid stations of 220 kilovolt (KV) voltage and above. The time of the project will be five years and Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) will be providing one window facility.
The Minister said instead of giving upfront tariff for transmission lines project, international competitive bidding model should be considered in order to take the country on to the right path.
He said in finalising policy framework for transmission lines project by the private sector all stakeholders including Law Division should be consulted and the policy framework should be resubmitted to the ECC.
The ECC was informed there were sufficient stocks of imported urea available with the National Fertiliser Marketing Limited (NFML) to meet the requirements of the kharif crop.
The Minister directed to Ministry of Industry and Production and the officials of NFML to dispose of the available stocks of urea at the earliest for the benefit of the farmers.
Khawaja Mohammad Asif Minster for Water and Power, Ghulam Murtaza Khan Jatoi Minister for Industries and Production, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Zahid  Hamid Minister for Science and Technology, Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan Minister for National Food Security, Khawaja Saad Rafiq Minister for Railways, Ms Anusha Rehman Khan MOS  for IT and Telecom, federal secretaries and senior officials attended the meeting. 

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