PTV delisted from privatisation plan

ISLAMABAD: The Cabinet Committee on State-Owned Enterprises (CCoSOEs) has decided to delist the Pakistan Television Corporation (PTVC) from the list of SOEs categorised for privatisation.

The committee took the decision on the request of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, according to a press statement issued by the finance ministry on Wednesday.

The information secretary briefed the forum that PTVC was currently undergoing massive restructuring in order to become a financially viable, professionally efficient and technically sound SOE that could help amplify national narrative and formulate favourable public opinion.

The meeting, chaired by Finance and Revenue Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, also had Privatisation Minister Muhammadmian Soomro and Adviser to Prime Minister on Institutional Reforms and Austerity Dr Ishrat Hussain in attendance.

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The Ministry of Finance on the occasion presented a report on the ‘Triage of State SOEs’ before the committee, which, after detailed discussions, directed the officials concerned to streamline the existing privatisation categories and present a roadmap before the committee at the earliest.

The forum further directed the officials to utilise the interim period effectively and workout options for restructuring of SOEs, including possibility of management contracts, where applicable, and update the committee periodically.

The members agreed that the forensic audit of major loss-making SOEs should be conducted in accordance with the directives of the prime minister.

The finance secretary informed the committee that the auditor general’s office was on board and had started collecting data of loss-making SOEs, whereas several private sector firms had also shown interest in this regard.

The committee decided that the forensic audit task might be distributed among the private firm(s) and the Auditor General of Pakistan as per rules, keeping in view the large number of entities.

The finance secretary further updated the forum on the progress made on Draft SOE Bill, 2020. After following due consultative process on the said bill, the Finance Division had submitted the same to the Law and Justice Division.

“Once draft bill is cleared, it will be presented to the cabinet for approval, before bringing it in the parliament,” the secretary added.

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