Decision on sugar exports
Pakistan's Agriculture Minister Shafqat Jamote said the government
would decide next week whether or not to allow sugar exports. Pakistan Sugar Mills
Association has asked the government to allow export of 200,000 tons of surplus sugar in
two phases after assessing domestic production and demand.
We have to sit down next week to take a decision (on sugar exports),
Jamote told reporters.
Duty, tax formula on cars amended
The Central Board of Revenue has offered car importers a liberal duty
and tax assessment formula which allows up to 50cc beyond the notified slab of assessment
to be ignored by the tax authorities.
Through a Customs General Order (CGO) No 52 of 1999, dated December 16,
1999, spells out the policy in this connection as follows: It has been observed that in
some cases the cars being imported in the country by overseas Pakistanis under personal
baggage and gift schemes are placed under higher slab of import duties because of their
engine capacities which are slightly more than the ceiling of the lower slab e.g. 1834cc,
1602cc or 1335cc etc.
Pakistan to achieve $9bn export target
Commerce Minister Abdul Razak Dawood expressed the confidence that
country will achieve the export target of $9 billion during the current fiscal year.
At a press conference here, the Minister said, exports are moving in
the right direction and in November, 1999, it registered a growth of 14% over the exports
of same period of last year.
The exports of last five months (July-November) in accumulative terms,
have also recorded growth of 7% as compared to the corresponding period of the last year,
the Minister added.
The press conference was jointly addressed by the Ministers of Finance,
Petroleum, Commerce, Food, Governor State Bank, Secretary General Finance and Chairman CBR
to explain the features of the new Economic Plan.
Dawood said, he met the officials of the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB)
and was fairly confident that target of $ 9 billion of exports will be achieved
Musharraf announces tax amnesty scheme
The Chief Executive Gen Musharraf has announced a tax amnesty scheme
allowing tax evaders to whiten their black money through payment of 10% tax.
This amnesty will be operative by March 31, 2000. A detailed package in
this respect would be annouced by Finance Minister Shoukat Aziz on Thursday, Dec 16.
Announcing his government's tax reforms package as part of the economic
revival plan here Wednesday, the CE said that "on truthful disclosure of all
tax-evaded assets, a payment of only 10% as tax will allow people to bring these assets
onto their books."
He added that the government has decided that no black money whitener
schemes will be allowed in the future.
LPG bids extended
Pak Arab Refinery Ltd (PARCO) a joint venture between governments of
Pakistan and Abu Dhabi has extended last date for submission of bids for sale of 337
tonnes per day Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) to Dec 29, from Dec 14, '99, sources said.
The refinery having capacity of producing 100,000 barrels per day of
refined products is scheduled to start commercial production from Sept 2000.
Oil import bill gets doubled
The international price of petroleum crude almost doubled, thus
increasing the share of the expenditure on oil imports in total import bill from 4.93 per
cent to 9.96 per cent during the last five months compared to the corresponding period of
According to an analysis of the detailed provisional monthly statement
of imports and exports released by the Federal Bureau of Statistics here Friday, the
average price of petroleum crude in November last year was $91.25 per ton. The country had
to pay $181.60 for the same quantity this year.
For this reason, the import bill of pet. crude at the end of the
5-month period amounted to $282.7 million, that is, 58.29% more than last year, in spite
of 7.62% decrease in the quantity of crude imported.
Petroleum prices raised by 10 per cent
The government on Saturday increased the prices of petroleum products
by an average of over 10 per cent.
The increase will push up the price of one litre petrol (premier) by
Rs2.96 from Rs26.04 to Rs29. The government has, however, made a comparatively lesser
increase in the price of diesel (HSD). The revised price of diesel will be Rs11.26.
The highest increase has been made in the price of furnace oil at
Rs7,285 a metric tonan increase by 16pc.
The government has announced that in future the prices would be
adjusted on quarterly basis and the benefits of any reduction in international prices
would be passed on to the consumers.
The revised prices are: MS (Regular) Rs27; HOBC (high octane) Rs32;
Super Rs29; MTBE Rs38.77; SKO (kerosene) Rs11.25; HSD (diesel) Rs11.50; LDO Rs9.35; JP-4
Rsl2.65; and Furnace Oil Rs7,285 m3tric ton with an increase of Rsl,214.50 a metric ton.
This is the third increase in the petroleum prices since May, 1998.
Immediately after detonating the nuclear devices, the government had announced 25pc
increase in the POL prices except for diesel.
Next, just before the presentation of this year's budget a 10.5pc
across-the-board increase in the oil prices was announced.
Those increases had reportedly yielded to the government a hefty Rs20
billion in the form of fuel surcharges.
Official sources said the government came under immense pressure to
take the latest "unpopular decision" as the POL prices in the international
market had gone up steeply.
For the last many years fuel surcharge has become one of the major
revenue incomes of the government.
In the last financial year, Rs74 billion was collected in the form of