Sunday, March 19, 2023
In a major relief to the inflation-weary people, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif Sunday announced a "petrol relief package" ahead of Ramadan for consumers.
The premier said people belonging to the low-income sector would be given a subsidy of Rs50 per litre under the petroleum relief package.
The announcement comes after the premier chaired a review meeting on the relief package in Punjab's provincial capital.
Pakistan is teetering on a precipice, with fiscal, humanitarian and political crises bringing it ever closer to the brink. As foreign reserves plummet, covering only three weeks of imports, the country is facing its worst economic meltdown in decades.
“Petroleum relief will be given to low-income consumers who have motorcycles, rickshaws, 800cc cars and other small cars,” he said, adding that the programme would be initiated soon and a comprehensive strategy would be formed with the cooperation of relevant departments for effective implementation.
Motorcycles, rickshaws and small cars are used by low-income people and the petroleum subsidy would give relief to the poor, he added. “The government is making effort for all possible help to the poor people despite its economic difficulties.”
Moreover, Minister of State for Petroleum Musadik Malik briefed the meeting about the strategy for providing petroleum subsidies to the low-income segment of society.
Last week, the federal government raised the price of petrol by Rs5 per litre which irked the consumers as they started making estimates of already high inflation in the upcoming month of Ramadan.
The new prices came into effect on March 16 and will remain in place till March 31.
|Light diesel oil
The Finance Division, in its fortnight bulletin, attributed the price hike to the depreciation of the Pakistani rupee against the US dollar and an increase in the prices registered by Platts Singapore.
The price of hi-speed diesel was increased by Rs13 per litre, while the increase in the price of kerosene oil has been kept at Rs2.56 by reducing the government’s dues on it. Similarly, the price of light diesel oil has been kept constant by adjusting the government dues as well.
Moreover, the premier has also decided to provide free flour to one million residents of Islamabad during Ramadan.
While presiding over a meeting in the federal capital earlier this week to discuss the deliberation to assuage the inflationary impacts on the lower and middle classes, PM Shehbaz said that the government is taking measures to reduce the difficulties of the poor segments of society.