ECC approves selected commodities' export to Afghanistan in Pakistani currency
The forum also approved technical supplementary grants of Rs5 billion for the Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives for conducting the 7th Population and Housing Census
Islamabad: Considering the food crisis and prevailing situation of Afghanistan, the Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet Friday approved the summary presented by the Ministry of Commerce, allowing the export of selected commodities to the neighbouring country in Pakistani currency by adding them in the list of items at Para-7(1) of the Export Policy Order, 2020.
Fruits, vegetables, cement, salt and dry fruits were also included in the list of export items, while the ECC removed the 45% regulatory duty on the import of pine nuts from Afghanistan.
The forum also approved technical supplementary grants of Rs5 billion for the Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives for conducting the 7th Population and Housing Census.
The ECC meeting here, which was virtually presided over by Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin, also approved Rs4 billion under the Pakistan Raises Revenue Programme (PRRP) for the financial year 2021-22 for Federal Board of Revenue.
Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam, Federal Minister for Industries and Production Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar, Federal Minister for Water Resources Chaudhry Moonis Elahi, federal secretaries and senior officers attended the meeting, a Finance Ministry press release said.
The ECC also approved Rs 78.5 million for the projects of ICT (Islamabad Capital Territory) Administration, by Interior Ministry.
The meeting gave its approval for amounts of Rs 60 million and Rs3 million (equivalent to $17,133.06) for the Interior Ministry within the sanctioned budgets for purchase of spare parts for helicopters maintained by HQs Frontier Corps Balochistan North and HQs Frontier Corps Khuber Pakhtunkhwa (North) respectively.
It approved re-allocation of Rs 226.8 million surrendered funds for the year 2021-22 under Sustainable Development Goals Achievement Programme (SAP) in favour of Interior Division for further release to the ICT Administration.
The meeting gave its consent for rupee cover of $65 million (equivalent to Rs 11,960 million) to the Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations & Coordination, committed by Islamic Development Bank, to utilize the IsDB loan under “IVAC Covid-19 Vaccine Support for Pakistan”.
The committee, while noting the growth in exports, approved another summary of the Commerce Ministry to enhance the quota limit for export of samples to $25,000 or 0.1% of actual export proceeds during the last financial year in US dollars per exporter per annum, by amending relevant paras of the Export Policy Order, 2020.
The ECC approved a Commerce Ministry’s proposal of removal of 45 percent regulatory duty on the import of Chilghoza from Afghanistan as the tariff reduction would encourage the legal import of unprocessed Chilghoza for processing in the country for export and would also be instrumental in creation of jobs in the far flung areas of border regions of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and economically backward areas of Balochistan.
The committee approved a proposal submitted by the Finance Division for engaging the services of third party to carry out the monitoring and evaluation (M&E) functions of the Kamyab Pakistan Programme (KPP). The M & E responsibilities were entrusted to Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF), which due to its legal status had not been able to undertake the task.
The ECC discussed and approved the Finance Division’s summary for resolving the issue of reversal of Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) unspent grant funds under amendment to MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with proposal to establish a new Credit Guarantee Company (CGC) having 56% shareholding of FCDO through Karandaaz (unspent funds) and 44 percent shareholding of Government of Pakistan, with mandate of issuance of credit guarantees against financing in the SME (Small & Medium Enterprises) sector.
The committee after deliberation and considering the depth of Pakistan’s relationship with China, and as a goodwill gesture on government level, approved the proposal of the Ministry of Water Resources for compensation package of $11.6 million for the affected Chinese nationals of Dasu Hydropower Project incident.
The ECC allowed the operations of SNGPL based plants (Fatima Fertilizer (Sheikhupura plant ) and Agritech) for a further two months post January, i.e., February- March at gas rate of Rs. 839/MMBTU on a summary of Ministry of Industries and Production to meet the Urea fertilizer requirement for remaining Rabi Season 2021-22.
It approved a summary tabled by Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication for the constitution of Advisory Committee headed by the Finance Minister for the release of IMT/5G spectrum.
The ECC also approved the draft Policy Directive of the Pakistan Telecommunication (Re-Organization) Act 1996 for renewal of Cellular License of Pakistan Mobile Communication Limited (PMCL/Jazz). It was presented by the Ministry of Information Technology & Telecommunication.
Next two 'Mission: Impossible' movies starring Tom Cruise delayed until 2023, 2024
The new dates for the films are July 14, 2023, for the seventh installment, and June 28, 2024, for the eighth movie in the series
The seventh and eighth movies in the "Mission: Impossible" franchise starring Tom Cruise have been delayed until 2023 and 2024 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, producers Paramount Pictures and Skydance said in a statement on Friday.
"Mission: Impossible 7" had been scheduled to debut in movie theaters in September 2022, followed by "Mission: Impossible 8" in July 2023.
The new dates for the films are July 14, 2023, for the seventh installment, and June 28, 2024, for the eighth movie in the series.
"After thoughtful consideration, Paramount Pictures and Skydance have decided to postpone the release dates for Mission: Impossible 7 & 8 in response to delays due to the ongoing pandemic," the companies said in a statement.
Theater chains, including AMC Entertainment and Cinemark Holdings Inc, are still trying to recover from extended closures during the pandemic.
Several fishermen trapped in sea storm near Lasbela
A boat carrying fishermen hit Gadani beach
Karachi/Lasbela: Several fishermen who went to deep sea for fishing got stuck in sea storm triggered by gusty winds near Daam port, Lasbela on late Friday.
Speedy winds raised huge tides in the Arabian Sea that entangled several boats in the open sea.
On other other hand, a boat carrying seven fishermen smashed into Gadani beach. All who were on board were rescued.
The boat's engine went powered off and speedy tides took it to the ship breaking area of Gadani beach.
Rescue efforts were launched till the filing of this report.
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