ISLAMABAD - The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet on Wednesday approved immediate import of 100,000 tonnes of urea in order to facilitate the farmers.

Finance Minister Asad Umar chaired a meeting of the ECC. The Industries and Production Division briefed the Committee about the availability of urea in the country. In order to facilitate the farmers and meet their urea’s demand, the Committee approved immediate import of 100,000 tonnes of urea.  Besides, it decided to allow additional import of Urea in the event of any demand-supply gap. The ECC directed the Ministry of Industries and Production to review the price mechanism of fertilizer industry for ensuring provision of urea to farmers at cheaper rates.

The Committee directed the relevant institution to check market manipulation activities in the fertilizer sector and use all the powers available under the law to penalize such behaviour. The Committee was apprised by the Industries Division about the status of NAB cases against seven persons involved in corruption in Pakistan Steel Mills. Interior Division informed the meeting that the name of seven persons had been recommended for placement on Exit Control List (ECL).

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The ECC in February 2019, while considering the summary submitted by the Ministry of Industries and Production, containing feedback on the status of NAB cases regarding PSM, had decided that the administrative Ministry should vigorously pursue NAB cases regarding PSM. It had also recommended initiating necessary action for placement of all personnel of PSM who are under NAB investigation on the Exist Control List (ECL). As per the directions of the ECC, a list of the personnel under NAB investigation was obtained from Pakistan Steel Mills and forwarded to the Ministry of Interior on March 5, 2019.

Statistics Division gave a presentation to the Committee about inflation and price situation of various items in the country. It was decided to constitute a sub-Committee, under the chairmanship of Minister for National Food Security & Research, to review the supply and demand situation of essential food items to ensure stable prices in the country.