Subsidy on 19 items, not 5, this Ramazan | The Express Tribune


Federal Minister for Industries and Production Muhammad Hammad Azhar has announced Rs7.8 billion Ramazan Package through the Utility Stores Corporation (USC), saying the government will ensure provision of quality commodities to the masses.

“The federal cabinet has decided to provide subsidy on 19 major commodities, including food and beverages,” the minister said while addressing a news conference along with the Federal Minster for Science and Technology Fawad Hussain Chaudhry on Tuesday.

Azhar said the subsidy includes Rs30.50 per kilo on flour, Rs40 sugar, Rs10-15 pulses, Rs20 basin, Rs45 ghee, Rs20 dates and Rs20 cooking oil.

The minister said the previous governments used to provide subsidies in Ramazan packages on only five items, but the incumbent government has provided that on 19 items of daily use.

He said in the current fiscal year so far, the USC sales have reached Rs100 billion from Rs10 billion annual sale of earlier years.

The minister said as the prices of food and beverages are mainly related to provinces, they should devise a comprehensive strategy to provide relief to the commoners on daily-use items during Ramazan.

He said the government has decided to start automation in the USC to ensure transparency and accountability following the international standards for enhancing capacity of the corporation.

On the current economic situation in the country, Azhar said in this Rabi season, urea fertiliser sales have increased to the highest level in the last 10 years.

He informed that the government has not imported urea during the last year to meet the requirement of local farmers and has decided to increase the supply by starting new manufacturing plants in the country.

The minister said in last January, large-scale manufacturing growth increased by 9.1% and from July to January of the current fiscal year, average growth has increased by 7.8%.

He said the overall economy remained in the right direction as current account deficit is now in surplus and dollar remained at Rs156.

Azhar said the International Monetary Fund programme has also revived and new avenues for country’s exports have opened for exporters to provide competitiveness to the local trade items in the international market. (With input from APP)

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