ISLAMABAD - While taking serious notice of shortages of essential items of daily use in the markets, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday warned the hoarders and profiteers of stern action.

According to official sources, the Prime Minister directed the provincial governments to take strict actions against the hoarders of essential food items. He also directed the authorities to ensure smooth supply chain for essential goods.

Prime Minister who is personally monitoring situation arising out of Coronavirus outbreak in the country round the clock, directed the Minister for National Food Security  Khusro Bakhtiar to ensure availability of food items, including wheat flour across the country.

Prime Minister also directed Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed to coordinate with Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar to examine the possibility of rerunning of goods trains for  inter-province transportation commodities.

Minister for Communications Murad Saeed will also give his input to Asad Umar regarding use of motorways and highways for the goods transport.

Asad Umar, is already working on a set of proposals about the management of supply chains of essential commodities during the partial or complete shutdown in various parts of the country. Planning Minister is working out of set of recommendations with various ministries including power, national food security, and economic affairs and industries.

These recommendations will also be shared with provincial governments before final approval of the National Coordination Committee (NCC). The proposals being deliberated include continuous operation of various industries, especially those included in the food and medicine supply chains and swift supply of electric power and petroleum products.

 

Detailed safety guidelines for the workers of those industries which are required to be kept operational to ensure the supply of essential commodities. These guidelines will be implemented in collaboration with the industry associations.

 

The Ministry of Industries has also been tasked to closely monitor any issues faced by the industries identified for continuous operations and address them in a proactive manner. The Ministry of Commerce will make assessments for import requirement of such industries and remove the bottlenecks, if any.