A meeting of the Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has approved additional guarantees of Rs 10.5 billion to meet the financial needs of Pakistan International Airline Company Limited (PIACL), besides sanctioning one month’s salary for the employees of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM).
The ECC meeting was presided over by Finance Minister Muhammad Ishaq Dar here on Wednesday. The meeting reviewed the proposals put forward by Privatisation Commission (PC) and Aviation Division on payment of one month’s salary (October 2016) to the employees of the PSM and on additional guarantee to the PIACL, respectively. With the approval of Rs 10.5 billion, the total volume of government guarantee to the PIACL has increased from Rs 151 billion to Rs 161.5 billion.
The meeting also constituted a committee to be headed by Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal, and Chairman Privatisation Commission Mohammad Zubair, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Revenue Haroon Akhtar Khan, Secretary EAD Tariq Bajwa and Acting Chairman PIACL/Secretary Aviation Division Irfan Elahi as its members to finalise a business plan for improving the financial and operational performance of the national flag carrier on a sustainable basis in co-ordination with the PIA management.
The ECC also approved the disbursement of salaries for the month of October 2016 to the employees of Pakistan Steel Mills Corporation and sanctioned Rs 380 million in this regard. The meeting also considered and approved the proposal by Ministry of National Food Security and Research for extension in the time period to March 15, 2017 for the export of surplus wheat and wheat products.
In view of availability of surplus wheat stocks in the country, the ECC also allowed export of an additional quantity of 400,000 tons of wheat and wheat products by Punjab and Sindh governments. The ECC was informed that the provinces have been unable to meet the export target as the Punjab government exported only 379,757 tons against the target of 600,000 tons while the Sindh government exported 238,000 tons against an allocated target of 300,000 tons. Punjab and Sindh governments approached the federal government with requests for extension in exports with Punjab till March 30, 2017 and Sindh government till January 31, 2017, as well as an additional stock of 0.2 million tons.