ECC raises wheat support price to Rs1,400 per 40kg

Committee approves Rs20bn relief package to further the provision of subsidized electricity to five export-oriented sectors

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ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Wednesday enhanced the wheat support price to Rs1,400 per 40 kilogrammes.

The ECC, which met under the chairmanship of Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Hafeez Shaikh, also decided to convene a special session tomorrow (Thursday) afternoon to discuss a detailed plan to keep the flour prices at the lowest possible level throughout the year.

Earlier on Monday, the wheat review committee had recommended the ECC to set the minimum support price of wheat at Rs1,400 per 40 kilogrammes for the crop year 2019-20.

The committee had also recommended provincial governments to ban the supply of wheat to the poultry sector for consumption as animal feed.

The ECC took this decision keeping in view of any increase in support price and incidental charges for supply of Pakistan Agricultural Storage and Services Corporation (PASSCO) procured wheat to provinces and allied issues related to procurement of wheat by provinces and the private sector.

Meanwhile, the committee approved a proposal by the Power Division for a special relief package of Rs20 billion to further continue the provision of subsidized electricity until June 2020 to five export-oriented sectors.

The ECC also approved a proposal by the Ministry of Energy (Power Division) related to two amendments aimed at providing ease of doing business to upstream the petroleum sector.

The amendments are related to the extension of exploration licences beyond two years by ECC rather than the Minister in Charge of Petroleum Division, and creation of a new Zone-1 (F) for the onshore licencing regime and consequent revision in the Zonal Map.

The ECC also okayed National Telecommunication Corporation’s revised budget estimates for 2018-19 and 2019-20.

Moreover, the committee gave in-principal approval to a proposal for SAR 22.5 million equity investment abroad by Eastern Products Pvt (Ltd) Pakistan.

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