The Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet allowed to export 200,000 metric tons of sugar and approved renewal of Rs 2 billion government guarantee for Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM). A summary was moved by the Ministry of Commerce to the ECC during its meeting, which was presided over by the Finance Minister, for allowing export of 400,000 MT with a quota of 10,000 MT sugar for each sugar mill, however, the meeting after discussion allowed export of 200,000 metric tons sugar.
The ECC was informed that there is surplus sugar in the country that could be exported and high growth is expected for next crushing season of sugarcane. Sources said that the ECC has not allowed export of 400,000 tons sugar because this may result in increase in the commodity’s price in the domestic market. The ECC allowed export of 200,000 MT of sugar against the proposal of 400,000 MT with a quota of 10,000 MT sugar for each sugar mill. The ECC also constituted a committee with advisor to the Prime Minister on Agriculture and Water Resources, Secretaries of Commerce and Industries to work out the reasons for non-utilisation of earlier approved export quota amounting 166,000 MT of sugar by sugar mills.
The ECC also approved import of LNG along with given framework as proposed by Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources with directives to ensure transparency and compliance with Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules. The participation of private sector would also be encouraged.
According to a statement, the ECC also discussed a summary, proposing import of 0.5 million tones of urea. After evaluating different aspects, the ECC constituted a committee comprising Deputy Prime Minister and Senior Minister for Industries, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission and Secretary Industries to work out further on subsidy mechanism, price fixation formula for fertiliser and gas availability to fertiliser plants, after consultation with fertiliser industries. The ECC also approved renewal of Government of Pakistan’s guarantee of Rs 2.0 billion for Pakistan Steel Mills.
The ECC also allowed Shafi Lifestyle Private Limited to release 989.9 sq meters of Latex Foam worth US $2640/- imported from India. The meeting approved changes in required commercial operation date for M/s Davis Energen Private Ltd, as approved by Private Power Infrastructure Board (PPIB) to remove mismatch in the timelines of Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and Gas Sales Agreement (GSA).
The ECC also approved granting of indemnity for implementation of hydro power projects in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) territory to the effect if the AJK Implementation Agreement (AJK IA) or Water Use Agreement (WUA) becomes illegal, void, invalid or unenforceable due to Change in Laws of AJ&K or Pakistan, the government would indemnify the Project Company or the lenders for any cost, loss or liability resulting from such illegality, voidness, invalidity or unenforceability.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2012
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