ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Tuesday approved a supplementary grant of Rs5.57 billion for sharing a subsidy of 50:50 percent among the Centre and provinces on the import of urea fertiliser.
The ECC also approved another supplementary grant of Rs1.146 billion (equivalent to $4 million) for trade missions abroad in order to meet the shortfall for the remaining period of the current financial year.
The ECC also sanctioned Rs1 billion in favour of the Cabinet Division for SDGs Achievement Programme (SAP) for ongoing schemes and Rs550 million for the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
The forum, which met under chairmanship of Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar here on Tuesday, was informed that the country had imported 100,000 metric tonnes of urea fertiliser from China.
The Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) had imported urea by obtaining loans from commercial banks on the basis of cash credit limit approved by the Finance Division. Markup is being continuously charged on the loans obtained by the TCP. The total amount of subsidy payable by the federal government, including markup, would be standing at Rs5.56 billion by June 30, 2023.
Being the administrative division of the TCP, technical supplementary grant of Rs5.57 billion could be released to Ministry of Commerce.
The ECC was told that Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governments had agreed to share the subsidy on 50:50 basis but no funds have been released by them so far. Moreover, the Balochistan government had declined to share 50 percent cost of subsidy and Sindh government has not responded. It was suggested that the Ministry of Finance may take lead for early settlement of payment by the provinces to the TCP.
According to official statement issued by the Ministry of Finance, Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Ishaq Dar chaired the meeting.
The ECC considered and approved various technical supplementary/supplementary grants:
i. Rs100 million to the National Highway Authority (NHA )under PSDP 2022-23 for construction of road from Dalbandin to Ziarat Balanosh (77 kms).
ii. Rs1,666 million in favour of the NHA to meet its expenditure incurred on restoration of roads damaged during floods in 2022.
iii. Rs5.57 billion to the Ministry of Commerce for payment of federal government’s share on import of urea. The ECC further advised the Ministry of Industries & Production to ensure early clearance of subsidy payable by the provinces on imported urea.
iv. Rs17.3 million in favour of Prime Minister’s Inspection Commission to meet its employee related expenditures.
v. Rs922 million in favour of Ministry of Energy (Power Division) for execution of development project “Construction of 2nd Circuit stringing from Jiwani to Gwadar”.
vi. Rs1 billion in favour of Cabinet Division for SDGs Achievement Programme for on-going schemes.
vii. Rs50 million for the Ministry of Poverty Alleviation & Social Safety for SOS children’s villages.
viii. Rs550 million in favour of Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for publicity/ awareness campaigns of the federal government during the current financial year.