Sunday, July 21, 2024

Govt fixed electricity tariff for export sector at Rs. 19.99 per unit.

The federal government on Thursday announced electricity rate at Rs 19.99/per unit for five export-oriented sectors in a bid to promote exports and improve country’s balance of payment position. Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Mohammad Ishaq Dar announced the relief measure, at a press conference here, after having successful negotiations with the representatives of the export-oriented sectors.

Dar said that the finance ministry would bear around Rs100 billion for the period of one year, which was difference of actual and subsidize rate. Earlier, the government provided the electricity at the rate of US 9 cents, which was to continue only for two months. Dar informed that the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) government had provided Rs147 billion targeted relief or Duty Drawback to exporters back in 2017. Resultant the exports increased by 12.7 percent.

“Had the policy been followed by the successive government, the country would not have been overburdened by Rs4,000 billion. additional loans in the last four years,” the minister said. He also said that the rupee was thrown in open market which provided opportunity to exploiters to play their games for vested interests and overburden the country with additional debts.

PML-N Government:

He highlighted that it was PML(N) government that had made the rupee a market-based currency in 1999. Also clearing that it did not imply that it should left on the mercy of speculators to do whatever they like. For gaining millions of rupees by putting additional burden on the country. He said in certain situations governments make interventions to control the foreign exchange rate volatility. Cited examples of United Kingdom, India and Bangladesh in this regard. US dollar was depreciating day by day and closed at Rs 222 on Thursday, adding the actual value of the greenback was below Rs 200.

Decreased Country’s public debt:

Dar said that even before his landing in Pakistan the currency market had started responding positively in the favour of Pak rupee. He said the appreciation of rupee had decreased the country’s public debt liability by about Rs 2,600 billion so far.

Increase Exports:

The minister was hopeful that if country’s exports increased by 15 to 20 percent then the government had no need to seek external assistance. Dar said that government was striving hard to provide assistance to the business community, exporters and farmers. He held that the relief in electricity tariff would also be instrumental in enhancing exports. To a question, he said the government had available funds to provide Rs100 billion subsidy on power tariff.

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