The Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) has increased the price of ghee at utility stores by up to Rs 30 per kg.

According to sources, a meeting of the Economic Co-ordination Committee was held under the chairmanship of Finance Minister Hafeez Sheikh in which it was decided that the prices of sugar, flour, rice and pulses would be maintained till the month of Ramadan.

In addition, two important summaries from the Ministry of Energy were approved by the ECC at the meeting.

The meeting also approved to abolish Neelum-Jhelum surcharge of 10 paisa per unit on electricity bills.

According to sources, the ECC meeting also approved taxation of payments to offshore supply contractors and communication support for the Ehsaas program.

It is worth mentioning here that Power Division of the Ministry of Energy had moved a summary for doing away with the surcharge with immediate effect because of widespread criticism from various parliamentary bodies.

As it is now approved, a formal notification would be issued immediately to stop collection of the surcharge through electricity bills.

The surcharge was imposed in the year 2007 for part financing of Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Pro­ject with a sunset clause of Dec 31, 2015 — the completion target of the project started at the time with an estimated cost of Rs130 billion.

It was envisioned that half of the financing would be generated through this surcharge on every unit of electricity sold to consumers in eight years.


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