KARACHI - The Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works and Ministry of Defence Production on Wednesday signed the contract to build indigenous platforms for Pakistan Navy.

The contract signing ceremony of indigenously designed Gun Boat and Tugs was held at Ministry of Defence Production where the Managing Director Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works (KS&EW), Rear Admiral Ather Saleem and Director General Munitions Production, Air Vice Marshal Muhammad Qaiser Janjua signed the contracts, said a Pakistan Navy press release.

Maj General Akif Iqbal, Additional Secretary Defence Production and Rear Admiral Ovais Ahmed Bilgrami, Deputy Chief of Naval Staff (Operations) were also present on the occasion.

The Gun Boat possessing stealth features, armor protection and capable of achieving high speed would be indigenously designed by Pakistan Navy, while its construction would be undertaken by KS&EW. Additionally, 02 x Tugs equipped with state of the art machinery, adept to operate in rough weather and capable to conduct salvage operations will also be constructed.

Speaking on the occasion, MD KS&EW highlighted that projects were manifestation of indigenization and self-sufficiency in defence ship building. He also underlined that presently various vessels were under construction at KS&EW including MILGEM Corvette, Fast Attack Craft (Missile) and tugs for Pakistan Navy and Maritime Patrol Vessel for Pakistan Maritime Security Agency.Director General Munitions Production appreciated the management and workforce of KS&EW for ensuring successful and timely delivery of vessels in the past while ensuring highest quality international standards. The ceremony was attended by various officials from Ministry of Defence Production and Pakistan Navy.

E&T exceeds tax recovery target

Provincial Minister for Excise & Taxation and Narcotics Control & Parliamentary Affairs Mukesh Kumar Chawla said on Wednesday that despite the pooir economic situation in the country, the performance of Sindh Excise Department had been excellent and Sindh Excise Department had exceeded the revised targets.

 He said that the revised tax target was Rs6,6831 million while a total tax of Rs 67,388.107 million was collected till the end of this financial year.

 Chawla further said that the collection of all taxes had been severely affected due to the lockdown in Sindh on account of coronavirus.

 However, with the introduction of Online Queue Management System, better collection of taxes in lockdown was possible. Chawla said that Rs1836.349 million was collected in the term of property tax while Rs54241.597 million was collected in the term of infrastructure cess. He said that it should be noted that from July 2019 to February 2020, Pakistan’s imports had declined by 30%, however, Rs535.291 million was collected in professional tax while Rs5984.498 million was collected in motor vehicle tax.

He said that Rs205.968 million was collected in the form of cotton fee and Rs60.177 million in the term of entertainment duty while the overall situation of collection of taxes was 101%.

Chawla also lauded the performance of the officers and staff of the department in achieving tax collection targets and hoped that they would continue to work in the same spirit.