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ECC okays Framework for Power Cogeneration 2013 Bagasse, Biomass

The Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) on Wednesday approved ‘Framework for Power Cogeneration 2013 Bagasse and Biomass’ as an addendum to the Renewable Energy Policy 2006.

This framework shall be effective for all high-pressure cogeneration projects utilising bagasse and biomass. The ECC also approved extension of Renewable Energy Policy 2006 for an additional five years. The summary was moved by Ministry of Water and Power.

The ECC under the chairmanship of Federal Minister for Finance and Economic Affairs Senator Saleem H Mandviwalla to discuss various agenda items. The ECC approved exemption of all foreign and local components of the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) from imposition of general sales tax, customs duty and other federal levies in order to ensure financial viability of the project. To facilitate and accelerate the project of KCR, Ministry of Railways moved a summary to get the approval of the ECC for waiver of general sales tax and customs duty on the loan component of the project. The KCR is a mega project of national importance and aims to provide modern rail-based commuter service to the citizens of Karachi with a total cost of $2.6 billion. The ECC was informed that Japan International Cooperation Agency will provide $2.4 billion on a 0.2 percent mark-up payable in 40 years, including 10 years grace period.

The ECC approved the request for grant of inland freight subsidy of Rs 1.75 per kilogramme (kg) for 1.2 million metric tonnes of sugar allowed earlier for export by the ECC. The committee was informed that there is slow pace of sugar export and keeping in view the industry’s liquidity position for paying dues to farmers inland freight subsidy of Rs 1.75 per kg may be extended to the export of total quantity of 1.2 million metric tonnes of sugar instead of 0.895 million metric tonnes allowed for export through an earlier decision of the ECC.

The ECC approved a summary of Finance Division to solicit the approval for equity investment in Democratic Republic of Congo. The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) evaluated the proposal and recommended that Lucky Cement Limited may be allowed to remit $40 million on account of equity investment in connection with establishment of cement manufacturing plant through incorporation of Joint Venture Company with the condition that the company will manage foreign exchange requirements from the open market and the outflow will be coordinated with the SBP.

In order to provide fiscal relief and to rehabilitate the economic life in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, FATA and PATA, the ECC approved that the areas of Hub and Hattar may be included in the ambit of DTRE scheme available to ghee manufacturers-cum-exporters based in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan. The ECC further approved withdrawal of the condition of export performance of last four years plus 20 percent enhancement. The ECC

allowed the manufacturers-cum-exporters of ghee to acquire the quantity of raw material for manufacture and export of 1,000 metric tonnes of ghee only. The summary for subject approval was forwarded by Federal Board of Revenue.

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