Pakistan to directly import 2 million tonnes of wheat from Russia on cash

import wheat

Economic Coordination Committee of Pakistan on Saturday decided to directly import two million metric tonnes of wheat from Russia on cash.

Pre-empting shortage and growing prices, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet had decided to import 2 million tonnes of wheat on a government-to-government (G2G) basis, and 1 million tonnes through an international tendering process under the current arrangement. 

The ECC meeting was chaired by Finance Minister Miftah Ismail, which also approved the supplementary grants of almost Rs 123 billion comprising one for payments to lawyers associations and subsidy amount on petroleum products differential claims of oil companies. 

The conference reviewed the wheat situation in the country and ordered the Ministry of Food Security to obtain the requirements of wheat by the provincial governments. Passco will be the recipient agency for the imported wheat. 

Wheat production dropped from 27.5 million tonnes in 2020-21 to 26.4 million tonnes in 2021-22. 

After discussions, the ECC permitted the continuation of the current subsidy for two weeks on necessary commodities including sugar, wheat flour (atta), rice, and pulses, and an Rs 100 per kg grant on ghee at Utility Stores. The finance division will also issue a huge amount on account of subsidy under the PM Relief Package 2020 approved by the ECC for the last months. 

Read more: Punjab government procured 397,553 tonnes of wheat from farmers so far

Moreover, ECC also permitted the Trading Corporation of Pakistan to import 200,000 tonnes of granular urea from China on a G2G basis on a deferred payment basis within 90 days. 

The ECC also gave a nod to a summary for removing 2 percent supplementary custom duty on the import of palm oil for shipments coming from all sources except Indonesia for June 10-20, 2022, subject to the consent of the federal cabinet. 

Regarding the bridge financing facility for Punjab Food Department for Ramadan package grant on wheat flour, the ECC meeting decided that if the Punjab cabinet does not approve the subsidy, the shortfall will be bridged by the federal government however the Punjab government will ensure that provincial cabinet approves the package once its meeting is organized. 

Meanwhile, the forum also approved an extension in the construction period of K-2 from Nov 30, 2020, to May 21, 2021, and K-3 from Sept 30, 2021, to April 18, 2022, to ensure the payment of a pending loan of $383 million prior to the expiry of its availability on June 3, 2022, from the Exim Bank of China to the contractor, who has already accomplished the project. 

Most Popular

To Top