ISLAMABAD - The federal government on Friday reconstituted the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as its chair, replacing Finance Minister Ishaq Dar as its head.

Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had appointed Dar as chairman of the ECC, the top economic decision-making body of the country. “In case of the prime minister’s absence due to any other commitment, Minister for Finance, Revenue &Economic Affairs shall chair the meeting,” said an official notification issued by the Cabinet Division.

Sources told The Nation that the federal government would also reconstitute the Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC) in the next few days. The government is likely to appoint Dar as chairman of the ECNEC, which gives approval to big development projects.

The ECC would consist of eleven members, the prime minister as chairman and members include minister for finance, minister for commerce and textile, minister for communication, minister for industries and production, minister for law and justice, minister for national food security and research, minister for privatization, minister for railways, minister for statistics and minister for water resources.

The following would be invited by special invitation for all items of the agenda: (i) Minister of State for Petroleum; (ii) Minister of State for Power; (iii) Governor, State Bank of Pakistan; (iv) Chairman Securities & Exchanges Commission of Pakistan; (V) Chairman Board of Investment; (VI) Secretary Commerce; (Vii) Secretary Communications Division; (viii) Secretary Economic Affairs Division; (ix) Secretary Finance; (x) Secretary Industries and Production; (xi) Secretary, National Food Security and Research; (xii) Secretary Planning and Development; (xiii) Secretary Petroleum and Natural Resources Division; (xiv) Secretary Power Division; (xv) Secretary Privatization Division; (xvi) Secretary Railways; (xvii) Secretary Revenue; (xviii) Secretary Statistics Division; (xix) Secretary Textile Industry; and (xx) Secretary Water Resources Division.

Under the Charter, the ECC considers all urgent economic matters and coordination of economic policies initiated by various divisions. It also identifies and proposes measures for the gradual attainment of the status of a welfare state. The ECC maintains vigilance on the monetary and credit situation and makes proposals for the regulation of credit in order to maximize production and exports and to prevent inflation.

It determines the future pattern of growth of agriculture and industries. The ECC review country's import policy and its effect on production and Investment from time to time.

According to the charter, the ECC evaluates export performance from time to time in relation to specific policies and measures for the promotion of exports.

It also watches the current price situation with a view to ensuring the stability of the prices of goods used by the common man. It also implements the task assigned by the cabinet from time to time. The ECC reviews cases of agreements and licensing for oil prospecting and exploration, overseeing the performance of important autonomous bodies and cases of Industrial sanctions where powers have not been delegated to subordinate authorities and also reviews tariff problems and cases involving fiscal anomalies.

According to a private TV channel, Dar's removal from the chairmanship of the ECC is one of the major decisions taken by Abbasi after being sworn in as prime minister on August 1.

The news comes as the National Accountability Bureau prepares to file a reference against Dar for possessing assets beyond his known sources of income in accordance with the Supreme Court's verdict that disqualified former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.