ISLAMABAD Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani approved the bailout package for the Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM), as proposed by the Ministry of Industries and Productions, in a special meeting held at the Prime Ministers House on Friday afternoon. The Prime Minister said that Pakistan Steel Mills would not be closed down as it was a national asset but it would be managed both professionally and commercially. He emphatically stated that neither politicisation nor interference in Pakistan Steel Mill affairs would be allowed in order to protect this state enterprise. The PSM, he said, should be restructured and revived as a commercially viable entity in accordance with the Cabinet decision to restructure the major state enterprises. He specifically directed the Ministry of Finance to monitor the bailout package and restructuring of Pakistan Steel Mills to ensure transparency and judicious utilisation of resources. Earlier the Minister for Industries and Production Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani informed that the cost of orderly closure of PSM as an option would be much more than to be spent on its proper restructuring. The Minister for Labour and Manpower Syed Khurshid Shah opined that the option of allowing the PSM to close down would render 17,000 employees jobless thus creating an enormous social issue. Chairman Board of Governor, Fazalullah Qureshi, apprised the meeting that for the last three years the Pakistan Steel Mills had totally been dependent on imported raw material since there was disruption in supply of local raw material because of poor law and order situation. The local raw material otherwise too partially supplemented the requirements of the Steel Mills, he stated. The global recession and fluctuation of prices at international level, he added, are beyond the control of Pakistan Steel Mills, which are mainly responsible for the losses incurred. The CEO of Pakistan Steel Mills Malik Israr Hussain briefed the meeting through a presentation highlighting the financial difficulties of PSM arising out of global recession. He further explained that the supply chain of raw material had to be ensured for the next two months for the viability of the Mill. He also dilated upon various options vis-a-vis the future of PSM. While elaborating the details of restructuring plan he assured that after the bailout and proposed restructuring the turnaround of PSM was expected by the third quarter of next year. The meeting was also attended by the Minister for Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Minister of State for Industries and Production Dr Ayatullah Durrani, Secretary Finance Salman Siddique and Secretary Industries and Production Abdul Ghaffar Soomro.