Press "Enter" to skip to content

Posts tagged as Asad Umar

ECC accords conditional approval for setting up new LNG terminal

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) on Tuesday directed authorities concerned to ensure supply of LNG without interruption due to war or any other contingency, while according conditional approval for setting up new LNG terminal.
The ECC of the Cabinet in its meeting chaired by Finance Minister Asad Umar on Tuesday considered proposals from different ministries/divisions.The minister made it clear that all pre-requisites and codal formalities should be fulfilled before making this new terminal operational ahead of upcoming winter season. Without fulfilling the pre-requisites this project cannot be completed, he said.The ECC also granted approval for supplementary grants of Rs1,813.755 million for the Ministry of Interior against total demands of Rs2,877.017 million. The supplementary grants were meant for Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration, Directorate of Immigration and Passports and for Pakistan Rangers.
The Ministry of Maritimes tabled a summary before the ECC that the ministry was cognizant of the traffic congestion at Port Qasim due to issues arising out of incurring LNG vessels, and the issue was taken up with the ECC in recent months.The ministry decided that the main channel of Port Qasim should not house the LNG terminal any more to ensure that the port remained functional for other cargo.The ECC was apprised that there was no scientific study identifying a specific a LNG zone, however, Port Qasim Authority Board through resolution dated May 7, 2011 had identified Jharri Creek/Chann Wadoo as potential LNG zone for future.The Ministry directed PQA in December 2018 for undertaking a scientific study through third party.
Ideally the process of setting up LNG terminal should be initiated after the scientific study.But, in view of the projected demand of LNG in near future, the ECC in its decision dated 12-2-2019 directed the Ministry of Maritimes Affairs to expeditiously finalise the proposal for setting up of an additional LNG terminal and submit the same to the ECC.In view of the urgency, the Jhari Creek/Chann Wadoo might be the most appropriate area for establishing an additional LNG terminal owing to certain advantages. Those advantages include no negative impact on normal traffic, as the site was on the alternate channel away from the main port, which would be connected through a pipe network of about 25 kilometres.
The existing two LNG terminals at PQA have been contracted on take or leave basis costing government more than 0.5 million dollar per day which places undue financial burden on the government.There was need to ensure that the supply of LNG was not interrupted due to war/ any other contingency.In view of all, the ECC might consider the proposal to fast track the additional LNG terminal in the vicinity of Jharri Creek/Chann Wadoo within 20 months, with the direction to PQA and Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority to expedite process of grant of license.The future LNG terminal would await result of the scientific study undertaken by PQA or all future LNG terminals could be contracted without any guaranteed payment by the government on BOT basis. The minister directed to meet all pre-requisites before moving ahead.
According to official statement issued by the Ministry of Finance after the ECC, the Ministry of Maritime Affairs briefed the ECC on matters relating to establishment of new LNG terminals at Port Qasim.The committee was informed that the Port Qasim Authority was looking at various choices with a view to find the most viable option.The committee gave instructions to expedite the matter and directed for completion of all formalities for setting up the new terminal expeditiously keeping in view the growing energy needs of the country.ECC approved proposal of Ministry of Energy based on request by Pakistan Petroleum Ltd for allocation of up to 9mmcfd gas from Fazl X-1 field in Matiari district to M/S Sui Southern Gas Company.The committee also considered and approved various proposals relating to supplementary grants.It should be recalled that such grants were previously approved by the Ministry of Finance, however in order to make the process more transparent, these were now considered and approved at the ECC/ Cabinet level.

Please follow and like us:

Pakistan remains committed to peace while resolute in defence: Asad Umar

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Asad Umar on Thursday said Pakistan remains committed to peace while resolute in defence of its sovereignty.

“We are at the crossroads of history,” the finance minister stated. Umar stressed, “Leadership of India and Pakistan need to decide if we want to lead our nations towards peace and prosperity or conflict.””Pakistan remains committed to peace while resolute in defence of our sovereignty,for which we have demonstrated both our capacity and will,” he asserted.Tensions between Pakistan and India have heightened after New Delhi without any proof blamed Pakistan for harbouring terrorists behind the Pulwama attack. Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan in response called for dialogue and urged India to provide actionable intelligence.

On Tuesday, Indian military aircraft had violated the LoC as they “intruded” from the Muzaffarabad sector and were forced to return owing to the timely response of the Pakistan Air Force.Pakistan on Wednesday confirmed it had shot down two Indian aircraft which had crossed over the Line of Control (LoC) and taken one Indian pilot in custody.Prime Minister Imran Khan in his speech on Wednesday once again invited India for talks, stressing “better sense should prevail.” Director General Inter Services Public Relations (DG ISPR) Major General Asif Ghafoor also called on the international community to play its role.“Pakistan is sending a message of peace and they [international community] should also come forward and see how the environment between India and Pakistan are a threat to peace and development not only to the two countries but the region and beyond,” DG ISPR said.

Please follow and like us:

Tareen tops list of lawmakers paying taxes in 2017

ISLAMABAD: The top ten parliamentarians in terms of their tax contributions paid Rs322 million in taxes, equal to 60% of total taxes paid by all members of the parliament in tax year 2017, raising questions whether lawmakers were fulfilling their moral,
Former member of National Assembly (MNA) Jahangir Khan Tareen paid Rs97.3 million in income tax, which was the highest paid by any national lawmaker in 2017, according to a tax directory for the year released by the government on Friday.Tareen’s tax contribution was equal to 18.2 per cent of the total taxes paid by 423 members of parliament. His numbers also showed an 81 per cent increase in his tax contribution from the previous year, when he was also the country’s highest tax contributor.
Imran reiterates resolve to hold everyone accountableSkewed numbersExcluding these ten members, the average tax contributions by the remaining 413 members of the National Assembly and the Senate paid Rs212 million in taxes – an average of Rs513,000 per parliamentarian.Such a poor tax contribution does not commensurate with the life styles of these worthy members of the Parliament, a fact that was acknowledged by Finance Minister Asad Umar on Wednesday.
True VIPs are those who pay taxes, says PM ImranBy including the tax contributions of top ten parliamentarians, the average per parliamentarian tax contribution would jump to Rs1.26 million, which does not present realistic picture.
Crests and troughsThe tax contributions by former premier Nawaz Sharif and incumbent Prime Minister Imran Khan also nosedived in tax year 2017, which was the fiscal year 2016-17. Few weeks after the end of that fiscal year, Nawaz was removed by the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case.
Presumably, his tax returns were filed after he was ousted from power. Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif paid just Rs 263,173 in taxes in 2017, as against Rs 2.52 million paid in the preceding  year.Meanwhile, PM Imran was a member of National Assembly from a Rawalpindi constituency at that time.
He paid a paltry sum of Rs 103,763 in income tax, which was less than by 35% or Rs 55,0000.Overall, there was an upward trend in tax contributions by members of parliament.
The fifth tax directory of parliamentarians showed that national lawmakers, including members of the federal cabinet, paid Rs535 million in taxes during tax year 2017 – up by Rs139 million or 35 per cent The tax contributions by the members of the Senate increased to Rs254 million – up by 14 per cent. MNAs paid over Rs281 million during tax year 2016, an increase of 26 per cent.But a significant number of parliamentarians were still paying far below their potential, showed the tax directory. Many of them paid Rs138,573 annual tax, which suggested that they paid taxes only on the income that the earned as member of the National Assembly or the Senate.
The tax directories for fiscal year 2016-17 that ended in June 2017 were released by Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar. Tax year 2017 was the fourth year of the PML-N term but the directories were released after a lag of over one year.The numbers of total taxpayers increased by over 34 per cent in tax year 2017, said Federal Board of Revenue Chairman Jehanzeb Khan while speaking at the launch ceremony.Overall, out of a total 1,169 members of the Senate, the National Assembly and the four provincial assemblies, as many as 98 legislators did not file their tax returns.
Under the law, filing the income tax return is binding on every citizen who earns more than Rs400,000 per annum and non-filer parliamentarians may face serious consequence, provided FBR plays its due role.Six senators and 17 MNAs did not file their annual income tax returns.Top taxpayers in parliamentSenator Rozi Khan Kakar paid Rs40.9 million in income tax, which was lower by Rs9 million over the preceding year.
Senator Taj Mohammad Afridi paid Rs29.4 million, which was less than his previous contribution of Rs35.3 million. Senator Muhammad Talha Mehmood paid Rs43.2 million, which was higher by 33%. Senator Aitzaz Ahsan paid Rs25.9 million, showing an increase of 86.3%.Senator Ishaq Dar paid Rs9.4 million and Senator Farogh Naseem paid Rs27.9 million in income tax, which was higher by 37.5%.Senator Farooq H Naek paid Rs11 million in income tax.Among the members of the National Assembly, MNA Sheikh Fayyaz uddin paid Rs14 million in income tax, MNA Isphanyar Bhandara paid Rs22.95 million income tax.Former Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif paid Rs10.3 million in income tax, which was higher by nearly 9%.Former PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who owns a controlling stake in Air Blue, paid Rs3.1 million in income tax, higher than the previous year. Finance Minister Asad Umar paid Rs4.85 million in income tax in 2017. Hamza Shehbaz Sharif paid Rs8.3 million income tax.Senator Rubina Khalid paid only Rs44,485 income tax, Senator Saleem Zia just Rs173,362.Former MNA Haji Ghulam Bilour paid Rs138,573 income tax, former Chief Minister KP, and MNA Amir Haider Hoti paid Rs168,586 in income tax. Sheikh Rashid Ahmad paid just Rs702,698 income tax.

Please follow and like us: