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MoP mandated to decide afresh on PSM sell-off




  •  Pakistan Steel Mills has reportedly given the mandate to Ministry of Production to decide about its privatisation afresh, sources close to Secretary PSM told Business Recorder. Director General, Privatisation Commission informed Chairman, Board of Directors (BoD) of Pakistan Steel about resolution No 04/2012 passed in their meeting held 5th October, 2012 for the withdrawal of review petition from the Supreme Court of Pakistan and further requesting them to provide views/comments vide UO No 2(8)Steel/2010 dated 3rd December, 2012. 

    Privatisation Commission Board in its meeting after thorough deliberations consented to the withdrawal of the said review petition and asked the Privatisation Commission to solicit consent of the co-petitioners and the Law Division. The Board also directed that Supreme Court of Pakistan be also apprised of the compelling reasons for its withdrawal. The sources said Chairman, Board of Directors PSM, Fazal Ullah Qureshi, who allegedly pressurised the mills for undue benefits, requested PSM Management for views/comments. 

    The Executive Committee of Management (ECM) deliberated the issue regarding withdrawal of review petition and a committee under the convenership of PEO (Commercial) was constituted vide Letter No A&P-1213/39 (P&C)/555 dated 12th December, 2012 to study the case and put up its recommendations. 

    The committee discussed the issue in detail and submitted its recommendations which are as follows: (i) since the bailout packages have not been provided as per demand of PSM and disbursed in instalments instead of one go in the past the funds were utilised for discharging old liabilities, leaving a meager amount for procurement of raw materials, the operation of PSM could not be revived due to shortage of raw materials required for enhancing the capacity utilisation; (ii) the mill will be revived provided sufficient quantity of raw materials are arranged to ensure enhanced capacity utilisation of the plant on sustainable basis; (iii) in the meeting of Cabinet Committee on Restructuring (CCoR), the GoP has decided to revive the mill; and (iv) Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf during a visit to the mill in August, 2012 announced to expand it. The Prime Minister”s announcement was widely circulated in the print and electronic media. In this connection MoU is under finalisation with the Russian government for which they have shown keen interest in providing financial package for the proposed expansion plan. 

    “We have submitted to Ministry of Production for information, guidance and clearance before the recommendations of the committee are sent to the Chairman Board PSM,” the sources concluded. 

    Copyright Business Recorder, 2013

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