ECC Meeting Postponed as Reports of Finance Minister Contracting COVID Surface

The meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Federal Cabinet scheduled for today has been postponed following unconfirmed reports suggesting that the Minister for Finance and Revenue, Shaukat Tarin, has contracted COVID-19.

The Finance Ministry Spokesperson, Muzammil Aslam, confirmed with ProPakistani that due to the Finance Minister’s ill health, all government and related official engagements have been canceled, including the ECC meeting, which was scheduled to be conducted at 11:30 AM today.

Sources said that on suspicion of possible symptoms, the Finance Minister postponed all engagements and got himself tested for COVID-19, the results for which will be disclosed later today.

In case his tests return positive for the virus, Minister Tarin will conduct official meetings and other engagements via video conference a few days after he starts feeling better.

To recall, today’s ECC meeting was scheduled to take up 14 agenda items, including a request for a Technical Supplementary Grant worth Rs. 5 billion for conducting the 7th Population and Housing Census.

It is noteworthy that the Council of Common Interests (CCI) had approved the final results of the 6th Population and Housing Census in April 2021.

Sources said ECC would also take up a summary of the Ministry of Industries and Production with regard to the requirement of urea fertilizer for the remaining Rabi season 2021-22. It was also going to discuss summaries from the Ministry of Finance regarding the Kamyab Pakistan Program, the National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination summary with regard to a loan of $65 million for IVAC COVID-19 vaccine support, and the Ministry of Commerce summary seeking an increase in the quota limit for export of samples.