ISLAMABAD -  The government on Wednesday announced to shelve three CPEC power projects worth $2227 million under the IPP mode.

China Sunec 50MW project with estimated cost of $125 million, 300MW Salt Range Coal Based Power Project, including Mining priced at $800 million and 900MW Zonergy Solar Project, Bahawalpur 1,302MW would be shelved, Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Ahsan Iqbal told the National Assembly in a written reply. He said no energy project for Balochistan has been shelved.

Ahsan Iqbal said that work on CPEC projects is in full swing. Road infrastructure projects are targeted to be completed by 2018 – 19, energy early harvest projects are expected to be completed by 2017–18, except hydel projects which will be completed by 2020-21. He said Gwadar and Railways projects are expected to commence soon.

Minister for Finance, Revenue, Economic Affairs, Statistics and Privatization Muhammad Ishaq Dar answering another question said the domestic and foreign public debt position on December 31, 2016 was Rs18,373.7 billion. The net domestic debt was Rs12,310 billion while foreign debt was Rs6,063.6 billion, he  added.

The net public debt on 30-06-2013 was Rs13,482.7 billion, out of which Rs8686.2 billion was net domestic debt while foreign debt was Rs4796 billion.

Parliamentary Secretary for Finance Rana Muhammad Afzal Khan said despite repayment of foreign loans amounting to over Rs13.6 billion by the present government, the foreign exchange reserves presently stands at over 21.5 billion dollars.

He said since January 2013, the government has borrowed Rs22,042 billion as loans and an amount of Rs853.3 billion has been paid as interest on these loans.

Explaining further, he said public debt is mainly obtained to finance fiscal deficit which is approved by the parliament. Government borrows from different sources, including domestic and external, to finance its fiscal deficit. Domestic sources mainly include commercial banks, SBP and various National Savings Schemes. 

NA PASSES NSPP AMENDMENT BILL

National Assembly Wednesday passed the National School of Public Policy (Amendment) Bill that bars head of the training institute of bureaucrats not to serve beyond a single non-extendable term.

Minister of Law and Justice Zahid Hamid laid the Bill on the floor of National Assembly that was passed by the house unanimously. The Bill amends the NSPP Ordinance, 2002.

According to the Amendment of section 9, Ordinance XCIX 2002, “The Rector shall be appointed by the Prime Minister on the recommendations of the Board from among a panel of at least three persons on such terms and conditions as may be prescribed”. 

The clause (b) of section 9 said: “The Rector should be appointed for one non-extendable term of four years, provided that the Rector shall cease to hold office on attaining the age of sixty-five years or expiry of the term, whichever is earlier”.

The amendment of section 11, Ordinance XCIX of 2002, said that all appointments in the school shall be made on such terms and conditions as may be prescribed “the directing staff shall be appointed or, as the case may be, posted by the Federal Government Management Pay Scales including MP-1, MP-11 OR MP-111 or such other pay scales as may be prescribed through rules”.

The same clause further explains: “Provided that fifty per cent of directing staff shall be appointed from amongst the persons from private sector or academia, provided further that where a retired civil servant is appointed under the first proviso he shall not be appointed unless he fulfils the criteria required”.

The amendment of section 5, Ordinance XCIX of 2002 said: “a member other than an ex-officio member, shall hold office for a term of three years and shall be eligible for re-appointment for one more term of three years”.

The amendment of section 6, Ordinance XCIC of 2002 said: “ If three are grounds to proceed against a member, including the Rector under sub-section(1), the Prime Minister shall order am inquiry into the matter as may be prescribed, whereas, the clause (3) of Section 5 “ if after inquiry into the matter, the Rector or member, as the case may be, is found guilty of inefficiency or misconduct or found to be capable of performing the duties of the office by reason of physical or mental incapacity, the Prime Minister may remove the Rector or the member from office”.

The amendment of section 18, Ordinance XCIX of 2002 explained “the  Civil Service Academy and its allied units shall not be constitution units of the School”.  

According to the last amendment of section 19, Ordinance XCIX 2002, “removal of difficulties for a period of two years from the coming into force of National School of Public Policy (Amendment) Ordinance 2016, if any difficulty arises in giving effect to any of its inconsistent with the provision of this Ordinance, as it may consider necessary for the removal of such difficulty”.