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ECC okays export of 250,000 tonnes of sugar

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  • Govt okays to export 250,000 tonnes of sugar. 
  • Quantity includes export of 100,000 tonnes approved in last meeting. 
  • Finance minister Ishaq Dar presided over ECC meeting. 

The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has greenlighted the export of 250,000 tonnes of sugar with the condition that the Pakistan Sugar Mills Association (PSMA) ensures that the prices of sweetener would not exceed Rs85-90/kg in the domestic market.

The Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue, Senator Ishaq Dar presided over the ECC meeting on Tuesday. Those who attended the meeting include Federal Minister for Power Khurram Dastgir Khan, Federal Minister for Commerce Syed Naveed Qamar, Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Tariq Bashir Cheema, former PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Minister of State for Petroleum Musadik Masood Malik, SAPM on Finance Tariq Bajwa, SAPM on Government Effectiveness Muhammad Jehanzeb Khan, Coordinator to PM on Commerce & Industry Rana Ihsan Afzal, federal secretaries and senior officers.

The Ministry of National Food Security and Research submitted a summary on the export of sugar during the year 2022-23 and presented the recommendations of the 4th meeting of the Sugar Advisory Board (SAB).

The ECC after detailed discussions on the recommendation of SAB, allowed 250,000 tons of sugar for export inclusive of the previously permitted 100,000 tons by the ECC, on a first-come-first-served basis. The ECC further decided that the total quantity of export may be distributed among provinces based on their installed crushing capacity, to be determined by PSMA.

Petroleum Division tabled a summary on liquidity requirement of the PSO for import of LNG and petroleum products into the country. It was submitted that PSO has been engaged in the import of LNG into the country to meet the deficit in gas demand and supply and is obliged to clear its financial obligations of supplier within stipulated period.

In order to enable the PSO to remain current in its payment obligations to LNG suppliers as well as to maintain LNG supply chain, the ECC allowed release of Rs10 billion budgeted subsidy to Petroleum Division and allowed the government guarantee against bank financing upto Rs50 billion.

The Ministry of National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination submitted a summary regarding transfer of amount to government of Afghanistan for functioning, maintenance, equipments and salaries of three Pakistani hospitals in Afghanistan.

The ECC after discussion, approved the revised mechanisms and modalities for transfer of funds to Afghanistan, as proposed by the Afghanistan Inter-Ministerial Coordination Cell (AICC) with the direction to attempt to release the amount in Pak rupees.

As per revised mechanism, the total amount already approved by the cabinet for salaries i.e. Rs1.009 billion would be transferred to Afghanistan in four tranches. These funds would be transferred through the ministry of foreign affairs and sent to Pakistan’s embassy in Kabul. The remaining three tranches would be transferred through banking channels to the embassy account opened for the purpose of disbursing salaries for doctors and other staff working in hospitals in Afghanistan constructed and operated by Pakistan.

The ECC further decided that dollar proceeds of exports will be recovered within sixty days of the LC opening. The Ministry of Industry and Production submitted a summary on the diversion of RLNG to Urea fertilizer plants upto 31st Jan, 2023. 

The ECC, after deliberation, decided to reject the proposal of Ministry of NFS&R and Ministry of I & P and decided that the RLNG supply to these plants would be discontinued with effect from midnight of 3rd January, 2023. The ECC deferred a summary submitted by the Ministry of Industries and Production tabled on price fixation of imported urea, with direction to work out and submit detailed mechanism for sharing of subsidy by provincial governments.

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In a first for history, PSX crosses the 77,000 milestone.

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At 77,213.31, the benchmark KSE-100 hit an all-time high, up 1,005.15, or 1.32%, from the previous close of 76,208.16.

The government’s readiness to seal an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) following the budget was cited by analysts as the reason for the upward trend.

Experts anticipate that in an attempt to bolster its position for a fresh bailout agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the budget for the fiscal year ending in June 2025 would set aggressive fiscal goals.

Budget for Pakistan, 2024–2025
Pakistan’s budget for the fiscal year 2024–25, with a total expenditure of Rs18.877 trillion, was presented on Wednesday by Minister of Finance and Revenue Muhammad Aurangzeb.

The Finance Minister, Muhammad Aurangzeb, outlined the budget highlights. He stated that the GDP growth target for the fiscal year 2024–25 is set at 3.6 percent, while the inflation rate is anticipated to stay at 12 percent.

He stated that while the primary surplus is anticipated to be 1.0 percent of GDP during the review period, the budget deficit to GDP is forecast to be 6.9 percent over the period under review.

According to the minister, tax income collection increased by 38% in the current fiscal year, and the province will receive Rs7,438 billion. The Federal Board of income expects to earn Rs12,970 billion in revenue for the upcoming fiscal year.

In contrast to the federal government’s projected net income of Rs9,119 billion, he stated that the federation’s non-tax revenue projections are set at Rs3,587 billion.

The federal government’s total outlays are projected to be Rs18,877 billion, with interest payments accounting for the remaining Rs9,775 billion.

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Pakistan currently has $14.38 billion in foreign exchange reserves.

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Pakistan’s commercial banks’ reserves, which stood at $5.28 billion at the conclusion of the week ending on June 7, rose by US$174 million, according to a central bank statement.

Reserving US$6.2 million less, the SBP now has US$9.10 billion in reserves. The causes for the decline in the reserves it had were not disclosed by the central bank.

The SBP released a statement that stated, “SBP reserves decreased by US$ 6 million to US$ 9,103.3 million during the week ended on 07-June-2024.”

The State Bank of Pakistan’s (SBP) foreign exchange reserves were reduced by US$ 63 million as a result of repaying external debt, with the reserves standing at US$ 9.093 billion as of earlier on June 6.

The central bank spokesperson said in a statement that as of the week that concluded on May 31, the nation’s total liquid foreign reserves were $14.31 billion.

In terms of net foreign reserves, commercial banks have US$ 5.22 billion of the overall foreign reserves, according to the SBP.

SBP reserves dropped by US$ 63 million to US$ 9,093.7 million during the week that ended on May 24, 2024, according to the announcement.

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In the local market, the price of gold plummets to Rs240,700/tola.

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Gold with a 24-karat purity level has dropped by Rs1200/tola on the local market.

Each tola of 24-karat gold is now selling for Rs240,700, with a further drop of Rs1029 bringing the price of 10 kilos of gold to Rs206,361. These figures are courtesy of the All Sarafa and Jewelers Association.

Meanwhile, after a $2 decline on the global market, one ounce of gold will be valued $2315.

A tola of gold was worth Rs 600 more on Wednesday.

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