The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the federal cabinet on Tuesday approved Ramazan Relief Package 2017, with subsidies worth Rs1.6 billion on 19 commodities in an attempt to provide relief to the general public during the upcoming holy month.
The meeting of the committee was chaired by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.
These subsidised commodities include wheat flour (atta), sugar, ghee, oil, pulses (channa, masoor, moong washed and mash washed), white grams, baisen, dates, rice, squashes, black tea, milk, and spices.
The commodities would be sold at subsidised rates across Pakistan through outlets of Utility Stores Corporation (USC).
In addition to the relief provided by the Ramzan package, the USC will also reduce prices on over 2,400 other items under different brands from 5 per cent to 10 per cent by obtaining special discount from vendors and suppliers and reducing its own profit margins.
Meanwhile, the ECC decided to increase the quantity of urea approved for exports from the existing 0.3 million metric ton to 0.6 million metric ton.
ECC also extended the deadline for export of urea from April 28 to October 31.
These decisions were made by the ECC after considering the proposal of the Ministry of Commerce, based on the recommendations of the Fertiliser Review Committee.
The ECC was informed that sufficient production and inventory of urea of domestic consumption is anticipated during Kharif 2017 for allowing export.
On a proposal by the Finance Division, the ECC approved the restoration of import duty and sales tax on import of cotton with effect from July 15, 2017.
The decision has been made to boost the confidence of domestic cotton growers during the upcoming sowing season.