Utility stores’ liabilities stand at Rs15.6bn, NA body told

ISLAMABAD: Parliamentary Secretary for Industries and Production Aliya Hamza told the National Assembly on Wednesday that current liabilities of Utility Stores Corporation stood at Rs15.616 billion due to non-payments by the previous government.

Responding to a question of Member National Assembly (MNA) Ali Gohar Khan during the Question Hour, she said due to cash flow problem, utility stores were unable to pay the vendors on time.

Furthermore, she said the USC was currently in the process of rehabilitation and was trying to revive itself by introducing structural changes.

“Currently, the corporation was making phased payments to its vendors. However, it was facing financial crunch and was unable to pay 100pc of the payments to each vendor in the present situation,” she added.

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Aliya Hamza said the utility stores still had to pay Rs4,728 million to the vendors while it had received a running finance facility of Rs4,986 million from the National Bank of Pakistan at a mark-up of 14.36pc.

“It also owed Rs5,902 million to the Trading Corporation of Pakistan.”

She said USC would receive Rs18.089 million from the government on account of subsidy on sugar to be further paid to the trading corporation.

Aliya Hamza said USC was running into a loss of billions of rupees when the present government came into power. “We are clearing the liabilities of the previous government.”

‘13,000 JOBS’

Meanwhile, on a question of MNA Romina Khurshid Alam, Aliya Hamza maintained that 18 new companies had entered in the automobile sector, six of which had already started manufacturing of vehicles which would help create more than 13,000 jobs in the country.

She said the federal government had introduced Automotive Development Policy (ADP) 2016-21 and following this policy, the present government helped the automobile sector attract an investment of Rs1 billion.

She claimed that there was no decline in sales of automobiles during the tenure of the government.

Aliya Hamza said according to the business plans of new companies entering the market, 13,256 new jobs would be created.

She said the government would implement 147 regulations, including safety standards, to bring improvements in the automobile sector.

To another question of MNA James Iqbal, she said no four-wheeler automobile units were closed or became non-functional during the last two years, while 13 out of 65 two or three-wheeler units remained closed during the same period.

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