Government has started considering to give new subsidy on basic necessities in the next financial year budget for the year 2020-21 in the aftermath of coronavirus outbreak.
Talks are underway with the respective ministries on different proposals in this regard.
Sources said these steps are being taken to secure the poor segments of society from drought and inflation. Under these measures subsidy will be allowed to the poor people on atta, sugar, rice, pulses and milk. Utility Stores Corporation will be used for giving subsidy.
Read more: Ehsas Emergency Program: Making it work
In addition to grant of subsidy, different groceries will be provided to the people at subsidized rates under Ehsas Program.
The subsidy will also be given to mill owners and suppliers so that they could supply basic necessities of life at lower rates.
According to sources the process for acquiring money to grant subsidy will be given final shape in the budget speech.
The modalities are being worked out for payment of amount in subsidy package. In order to make package a success state bank policy rate is likely to further scale down.
New grant and loans on soft terms will be obtained from international institutions in connection with this package.
Dr. Hafeez Shaikh assures targeted disbursement of agriculture package
Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh has assured that Rs 50 billion agriculture package announced by the government recently would be targeted and every attempt would be made to ensure its beneficiaries were the farmers and crop growers for whom this relief package was intended.
The government has approved this package with a view to extending relief to the farmers community and its direct disbursement to the farmers and crop growers remains a key objective of the government, he said while chairing a meeting with a delegation of the Farmers Associates Pakistan (FAP).
Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh welcomed various proposals and recommendations put forward by the delegation regarding extending direct relief to the farmers, including possible reduction of electricity tariff for tube-wells, reduction of import duty on fertilizers, reduction of mark-up and waiver of agricultural loans, deregulation of the import and export of agriculture products and livestock. He said the government was open to considering any suggestion to further improve the disbursement criterion of the agriculture package of Rs 50 billion in view of the input and consultation of the stakeholders.
Similarly, the government was also willing to extend further relief to the farmers as and when required and proposed by the Ministry of National Food Security & Research for the growth of agriculture and betterment of farmers. The Adviser conceded that the agriculture sector had the potential in a post-COVID scenario to generate employment, boost growth, alleviate poverty and enhance food security.
He asked the leadership of FAP and the concerned ministries to sit together in the coming days to further fine-tune and improve the disbursement mechanism of the agriculture package and put bring up any other suggestions or recommendations to further support the farming community and boost the agriculture sector.
Online Int’l News with additional input by GVS News Desk