On Monday, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet granted approval to increase the prices of 49 medicines under the Minimum Retail Price (MRP) category. However, the government asserted that these 49 medicines were still priced 24 to 77 percent lower than comparable medicines in other regional countries such as India, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. Some of the medicines affected include Taflotan Ophthalmic Solution 0.0015% w/v OBS Pakistan, MultiBic 2 mmo1/1 potassium solution for haemodialysis/haemofiltration by M/s Fresenius Medical Care Pakistan (Private) Ltd, MultiBic 4 mmo1/1 potassium solution for haemodialysis/haemofiltration, MultiBic 3 mmo1/1 potassium solution for haemodialysis/Haemofiltration, and others.
Additionally, the ECC approved a supplementary grant of Rs402.251 billion for debt servicing on Chinese and Saudi loans, primarily due to fluctuations in the exchange rate. The exchange rate was initially projected at Rs186 against the US dollar, but it depreciated to an average of Rs235 against the US dollar.
According to an official announcement from the Ministry of Finance, the meeting was chaired by Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue, Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar.
Furthermore, the ECC granted approval for the issuance of a Government of Pakistan (GoP) guarantee worth Rs9.5 billion for the construction of the Hyderabad-Sukkur motorway on a build-operate-transfer basis. It also approved Rs12 billion for the procurement of relief items to replenish reserves and enhance preparedness to respond to potential disasters.
The ECC also endorsed a summary from the Ministry of Interior, releasing funds of Rs66.336 million as Technical Supplementary Grant (TSG) for the construction of the Frontier Constabulary Training Center in Michni, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Additionally, the ECC approved supplementary and technical supplementary grants for 16 other projects.