ECC okays import of 0.3m tons of wheat

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ISLAMABAD
Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) has approved import of 300,000 tons of wheat to cater wheat shortage in the country. The meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Adviser on Finance Hafeez Sheikh here on Monday.
The Economic Coordination Committee was informed that the first shipment of wheat is likely to arrive in the country by 15th of next month. The ECC asked Punjab and PASSCO to release their stocks to overcome the shortage in the country. The wheat can be imported till March 31. The country is facing mind-boggling hike in flour prices as rates soared in Karachi, Lahore, Multan, Faisalabad, Peshawar and other major cities, causing an uproar across the country. The wheat flour rate in Karachi has soared to Rs 70 per kilogramme. Taking notice of reports regarding hike in prices of wheat flour, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday ordered a country-wide crackdown on hoarders and profiteers.
He directed the officials to take effective measures for stabilising the rates of flour, the sources said and added that those involved in creating an artificial crisis of flour in the country will be dealt with iron hands. The meeting reviewed the situation of flour shortage and wheat crisis and is expected to give go ahead to import 0.3ton wheat to cater the shortage in the country.
The elimination of 5 percent tax on cotton also came under discussion during the meeting. The proposal to convert Lahore Garment City’s loan into grant was also discussed. The meeting reviewed the technical grant of Rs 90 million to the National Book Foundation.

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