ECC approves Rs 7.8 billion Ramazan Relief Package

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) chaired by Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh approved Rs7.8 billion Ramazan Relief Package.

Ministry of Industries and Production presented a ‘Ramadan Relief Package-2021’ in accordance with the directive of the prime minister to provide maximum relief to the marginalized segments of the society during the holy month of Ramazan.

The Utility Stores Corporation would subsidize 19 essential items under the proposed relief package entails a subsidy equivalent to approximately Rs. 7.8 billion including wheat flour, sugar and ghee which have significant differential prevailing prices in the domestic markets.

The MD USC briefed the forum that procurement would start from April 1 to ensure availability of basic items at discounted prices across 4000 outlets of USCs throughout the country.

The Committee directed him to coordinate with Finance Division for timely release of funds to ensure well-timed procurement and other contingent arrangements.

Under Rs 7.6 billion Ramazan relief package a subsidy of around Rs40 per kilogram has been given on sugar, ghee and wheat flour. The relief package includes reduction in prices of 14 essential items by 10 to 15 per cent at the Utility Stores.

The subsidised sale of wheat flour, sugar, banaspati ghee, rice and three pulses — gram pulse, moong and maash — has continued since January 8 this year under the government’s special relief package.

Ghee and oil prices are ranging between Rs250 and Rs300 per kg/litre for different brands in open markets, but the rates at the Utility Stores were around Rs170 and Rs175 per kg/litre, respectively.

The Ramazan package will commence on April 1 and it will continue for 45 days. The average Ramazan relief package over the past 10 years had been between Rs1.5 billion to Rs2.5bn.

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