ECC approves Rs80m grant for payment to British law firm

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) on Monday approved Rs80 million for a British law firm to pursue cases under investigation in the United Kingdom.

The meeting of ECC was chaired by Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh.

Sources said that the Ministry of Interior had requested the ECC to give a Rs80m Technical Supplementary Grant (TSG) for payment of legal fees to a British law firm, Guernica International.

An amount of £175,000 is yet to be paid as the law firm for the period of July 2018 till January 2019, wherein the firm worked on cases and forwarded a request for contract renewal.

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The government of Pakistan is giving £25,000 per month to pursue cases under investigation in the UK, including the Imran Farooq murder case, money laundering and incitement of violence cases.

On another summary, the ECC recommended the formation of a committee consisting representatives from the Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of National Food Security and Research (MNFS&R) to decide a timeline for export of mango and kinnow after consultation with stakeholders.

In light of a summary presented by the Ministry of Information Technology regarding the manufacturing of SIMs/smart-cards in Pakistan, the chair directed constituting a committee to examine the proposal and present a report for a way forward within two weeks.

The committee would be chaired by the Federal Minister of Industries and Production Hammad Azhar and would include representatives from the Ministry of IT, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and Board of Investment (BOI).

The meeting was attended by Industries Minister Hammad Azhar, SAPM on Revenue Dr Waqar Masood, SAPM on Petroleum Nadeem Baber, and Adviser to the PM for Institutional Reforms and Austerity Dr Ishrat Hussain. State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Dr Reza Baqir also participated through video-link.

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