ECC okays 1 month salary to PSM employees


The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Wednesday directed the Finance Division to release one month salary amounting to Rs355 million for the month of June to the employees of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM).
The ECC met with Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh to further authorize the Finance Division to arrange for payment of projected net salary of Rs4,097 million to the PSM employees for the Financial Year 2019-20 to be disbursed every month to PSM. The ECC has approved proposals submitted by the Ministry of Industries and Production for payment of salaries to the employees of Pakistan Machine Tool Factory (PMTF) and Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM). The proposal of the Power Division for payment of electricity charges by the Government of Sindh as Thar subsidy for 4,514 domestic consumers of Taluka Islamkot also got approval of the ECC.
Similarly, the ECC approved a proposal for payment of Rs128 million for the salaries for the month of February to May 2019 to the employees of the Pakistan Machine Tool Factory and directed the Ministry of Industries and Production to hold a meeting with the Strategic Plan Division, Commerce Division, Sindh Building Control and Sindh Revenue Control to finalize a plan to hand over the PMTF to the SPD after clearance of all liabilities.
On another summary submitted by the Power Division, the ECC approved the proposal for reflection in electricity bills of a subsidy by the Sindh government for 4,514 consumers of Taluka Islamkot in terms of payment of all charges of consumers using 100 or lesser units of electricity on actual charges as well as a flat subsidy of Rs800 to be given to domestic consumers using more than 100 units.
The meeting decided that in case the Government of Sindh failed to pay the subsidy in any future situation for a period of three months, the same amount be deducted at source by the federal government. The ECC, on a summary submitted by the Ministry of Energy, also approved a proposal for budgetary allocation on annual basis for payment to Asia Petroleum Limited (APL) through Pakistan State Oil under a technical supplementary grant from the current financial year and onwards against accumulating shortfall in guaranteed throughput due to reduced demand in refined furnace oil by HUBCO.
The meeting asked the Ministry of Energy to take quick remedial measures for offsetting the accumulating shortfall by engaging local refineries for using APL’s network as reverse pipeline until the contractual obligation ending in 2027. The ECC, on a summary submitted by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, also approved a proposal regarding necessary amendments and exemptions in Income Tax Ordinance, Sales Tax Act and Custom Act for the Gwadar Port and Gwadar Free Zone.
It asked the Law Division to suggest a way forward for their implementation and bring it up in the next Cabinet meeting in consultation with the Commerce Division, Planning Division, Maritime Division, Federal Board of Revenue and Board of Investment. The ECC was also briefed by the Ministry of National Food Security and Research on the wheat situation in the country with the prices of wheat showing a slight drop in recent days.
The ECC was told that the wheat stocks in the country were 7.516 million tons as on 16-08-2019 as compared to 10.950 million tons of the corresponding period of last year. Similarly, around 0.369 million tons of wheat and 0.198 million tons of wheat flour had been exported through sea and land route from the period 01-07-2018 to 16-08-2019. Later, Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh also chaired a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE).

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