Senate Panel Recommends Suspension of EDF for 3 Years

The Senate Standing Committee on Finance has recommended the suspension of the Export Development Fund (EDF) for a period of three years.

The meeting was held under the chair of Senator Muhammad Talha Mahmood to discuss the proposals to the Finance Bill 2021.

The representatives of the Karachi Chamber of Commerce revealed that the Minister for Finance, Shaukat Tarin, has committed to transfer the fund from the Ministry of Finance to the Ministry of Commerce for its effective utilization for the up-gradation of the industry in order to increase the exports.


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The attendees of the meeting were also told that Rs. 58 billion has been collected from the industry at 0.25 percent, but its utilization during the last three years had not been more than Rs. 2 billion per annum. The industry proposed that the fund should be frozen, and further collection should be suspended as the industry has been facing financial constraints due to the pandemic, and even more important is that this money was not being utilized.

The officials of the Ministry of Commerce stated that the Ministry of Finance was repeatedly being asked to transfer the fund to the former as its utilization was hardly Rs. 500 million to Rs. 600 million per annum from the Rs. 8-9 billion collection. The committee was informed that the fund cannot be abolished because the collection has been started through an act.


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The committee unanimously recommended that the collection under the Export Development Fund (EDF) should be suspended for three years.

It expressed serious concerns over the highhandedness of custom officials and sought reasons from the Chairman of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) for the raid of a cold storage. Senator Mohsin Aziz stated that around 100 custom officials with gunmen had raided his cold storage as a foreign terrorist was hiding there, and had forfeited the goods of the people by declaring them undeclared.

Subsequently, Senator Saleem Mandviwala pointed out that Senator Aziz’s name was still in the FIR, upon which the committee sought a report from the FBR on the matter and directed it to immediately remove his name from the FIR.