The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has approved to extend a fresh guarantee to the tune of Pak Rs.2.0 billion in favour of Faysal Bank Ltd to provide loan to Pakistan International Airlines Corporation (PIA). The meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet held under the chairmanship of Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar . The ECC said that this loan would be utilized to pay instalment to Exim Bank as well as partial over dues of Pakistan State Oil . ECC also noted that PIA was obtaining another loan of Rs.3.40 billion from National Bank of Pakistan by pledging its domestic cash flow. The ECC directed the Secretary Aviation Mohammad Ali Gardezi to place before it the latest financial position of PIA as well as progress on the acquisition of ten aircrafts approved by the ECC within one month. Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal observed that there should be visible improvement in the conditions at the Airports and no smoking should be strictly enforced. ECC decided to grant one time waiver for clearance of used vehicles by importers of cars manufactured in the year 2009. The Ministry of Commerce informed the ECC that around 900 vehicles of 2009 model were stuck up on the ports due to confusion in determination of age of cars. In order to permit the clearance of cars, ECC decided to grant a one time waiver, where the date of Export General Manifest (EGM) is prior to 31.12.2013, subject to payment of surcharge. ECC approved the surcharge for the first 8 months beyond the prescribed age limit of 3 years shall be calculated on rates stipulated in Ministry of Commerce O.M. Dated 25.2.201 and an additional surcharge for the period (maximum 4 months) beyond 3 years and 8 months at a flat rate of 20% of the C&F value. The powers to condone age beyond prescribed age limit, delegated to Collectors Customs, vide Ministry of Commerce OM dated 25.2.2013 and 15.6.2012 was also withdrawn by ECC subject to two months public notice. ECC however, permitted the relevant Customs Collectorate may continue to be delegated the authority for condoning delay in shipment by 30 days beyond the prescribed 120 days (para 4(1)(b) and 4(3)(c) of the Appendix-E of IPO-2013, against an additional surcharge of 5%. On a summary moved by Ministry of Commerce the ECC decided to allow TCP to purchase 75000 tons in the first month and 50,000 tons per month subsequently with the condition that it will inform about the progress to the ECC by the end of February 2014 . The decision has been taken in view of the fact that this is the middle of the crushing season and the sugar cane production is projected to be very good. The ECC approved establishment of monitoring unit in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources to evaluate its performance and that this cell shall submit quarterly reports before it. The monitoring unit shall oversee setting up of benchmarks and keep performance indicators for Distribution Companies (DISCOs) and Generation Companies (GENCOs) and other entities/organizations under the Ministry of Water and Power . It will check coordination with the Ministry of Finance for follow up on key commitments on energy sector reforms program with the International Financial Institutions (IFIs).The cell would establish coordination with relevant agencies to ensure progress and compliance with respect to various projects. The ECC also decided to set up a similar unit in the Ministry of Water and Power with similar terms of reference. The ECC approved the National Power Tariff and Subsidy Policy Guideline 2014 placed before it by the Ministry of Water and Power as it was in line with Section 7 of the NEPRA Act. The Ministry of Water and Power informed the ECC that the amount of bagasse produced by sugar mills in the country had the potential to generate over 2000MW of electricity.
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