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ECC meets to review economic situation

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ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) which met here on Tuesday under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani reviewed the price situation and it was informed that sensitive price indicator has registered decline during the last two consecutive weeks of this month.

The prices of 17 items have registered increase, while prices of 15 items have registered a decline and 21 items remained unchanged during the week ending September 18. The ECC also reviewed the wheat stock position which was found comfortable level. The ECC was further informed that the import of 2.5 million tonnes wheat will be completed by the end of this year.

The ECC was apprised the supply of fertilizer in the market is sufficient and so far 2,45,770 metric tons has arrived in the country which has improved the situation considerably. Total stock of sugar will be sufficient till the end of current season, the ECC was informed. The ECC was apprised that tax collection by FBR has increased by 32.2% in the first two months of the current financial year amounting to Rs.12.2 billion more than the target.

The ECC was also informed that foreign investment has registered an increase of 72% in the first two months of the current financial year amounting to US $ 645 million.

Foreign Direct Investment registered an increase of 64% amounting to US $ 754 million during the first two months. It shows that foreign investors are upbeat on the economic outlook of the country, the ECC observed. The ECC was further informed that remittances also registered also increase of 74% amounting to $ 1.2 billion in the first two months of the current financial year which suggests that expatriate Pakistanis have confidence in the economic management of the country.

The ECC constituted a committee headed by Advisor on Industries to review allocation of additional requirements of Natural Gas from Marri Gas Field to Fatima Fertilizer Company. The project is critical to meet the requirements of the agriculture sector, the plant is expected to operational in November 2009.

Other members of the committee are Minister for Water and Power, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission, Minister for Information Technology and Minister/Secretary Ministry of Petroleum,secretary Industries. The ECC also reviewed the summary of the Ministry of Industries regarding progress status of Fatima Fertilizer Company being set up at Sadiqabad.

The ECC constituted a committee consisting of Advisor on Industries, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission, Chairman, Federal Board of Revenue, Minister for Industry Government of Balochistan and Chief Secretary of Balochistan to study the incentive package for establishing of various special economic zones/EPZ/Industrial Estate and Government of Baluchistan Export Processing Zone at Gawdar.

The ECC approved the engagement of Chinese Contractor for Muzaffarabad City Development Project. The ECC approved the summary of the Textile Industry Division regarding the Tariff Structure of Polyester Chain- monetizing of Tariff on PTA. The ECC approved action plan pertaining to MINFAL for the actualization of loan by Asian Development Bank.

Input from Agencies

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