ECC approves Rs136 bln finance facilities of Energy Ministry.


ISLAMABAD -- The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet Wednesday gave approval to many proposals, including raise of finance facilities for the Ministry of Energy for adjustments and import of used vehicles.

The ECC meeting, which was chaired by Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, approved a proposal put forth by the Ministry of Energy to raise finance facilities of Rs 136.454 billion and Rs 30 billion for adjustment of existing finance facilities of Power Holding Limited (PHL).

The proposal has been worked out between the PHL and a consortium of local commercial banks in pursuance of ECC decisions taken in November 2016 and February 2017 for the purpose of funding repayment liabilities of DISCOs (distribution companies) on terms and conditions as approved by the Finance Division, a Finance Ministry press release said.

Earlier, the ECC was told the terms and conditions that the PHL finance facilities had a five-year tenure, inclusive of two-year grace period which had been completed, and the installment payments on account of principal portion had become payable.

Under the latest arrangement approved by the ECC, the principal installment payments would be deferred for further two years from the date of execution of fresh facilities and it would be a cash neutral transaction as the disbursement of fresh facilities would be used for adjustment of outstanding principal portion of existing PHL finance facilities of Rs 136.454 billion and Rs 30 billion.

The ECC also considered the Commerce Division's proposal related to the import of used vehicles under personal baggage, transfer of residence and gift schemes, which require the payment of duties and taxes to be paid out of foreign exchange arranged by Pakistani nationals themselves or local recipients producing proof of conversion of foreign remittance to local currency.

The committee allowed the importers to meet any shortfall in arrangement of required foreign remittance for payment of duties and taxes through local sources in case of a scenario where the Pak rupee depreciates or government increases the import duties and / or taxes after the receipt of remittance and before the filing of the good declaration, which results in shortfall of remitted amount vis-a-vis payable duties and taxes.

The ECC decision would help clear up a total of 1,017 vehicles currently stuck at the Karachi Port because either no foreign remittance had been received...

To continue reading