Saudi Arabia to construct oil refinery in Gwadar: Chaudhry

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ISLAMABAD: The federal cabinet discussed a six-point agenda in a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday.

Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry while briefing the media along with Petroleum Minister Ghulam Sarwar after the cabinet meeting said, “The cabinet gave approval for the agreements discussed between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia during a visit of the Kingdom’s delegation last week.”

An approval has been accorded for the construction of an oil refinery in Gwadar, he added.

The information minister elaborated, “Saudi Arabia will make an investment of Rs30 billion in Pakistan pertaining to the discovery of oil and gas.”

To this, Petroleum Minister Ghulam Sarwar added saying, “Saudi Arabia is interested in Gwadar and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and has expressed the desire to immediately invest in an oil refinery.”

“It has been agreed that it will be a government to government (G2G) agreement,” Sarwar further added. “Saudi Arabia’s minister of energy will visit Islamabad next month,” he further said while adding that the volume and other details are yet to be decided.

“At the time of the agreements, provincial governments will also be taken into confidence,” the petroleum minister assured.

Approval for PM House to be converted into high-level university

Speaking about the other points discussed during the meeting, Chaudhry said, “The cabinet approved converting the Prime Minister House into a high-level research university.”

Those appointed illegally have been removed: Chaudhry

The cabinet also accorded approval for appointments of new members in the Ministry of Finance and the fiscal and monetary policy boards, Chaudhry added.

“We have decided to remove the illegal appointments made by former finance minister Ishaq Dar,” he added. “The previous government was run by Nawaz Sharif and Ishaq Dar.”

Chauhdry further announced that presidents of National Bank, First WomanBank, Zarai Taraqiati Bank and SME Bank have been removed.

Jameel Ahmed and Shams-ul-Hasan have been removed as deputy governors State Bank, the information minister announced. “Ms Vaddiya has also been removed from Competition Commission Of Pakistan,” Chaudhry added that two other members of the Competition Commission Of Pakistan had been removed.

The information minister further said that only the federal cabinet can make appointments in ministries.

Rs180 million raised from auction of 62 cars

Speaking at the auction of PM House luxury vehicles as part of the premier’s austerity drive, Chauhdry said, “Rs180 million were raised from the sale of 62 cars and Rs2.3 million were raised through the auction of buffaloes.”

“There were 528 staff members at the PM House but only five are now remaining,” he added. “None of them are unemployed and are part of a surplus pool and will be employed in different departments,” he clarified.

2,067 official properties traced

Chaudhry further said that they have found details regarding 2,067 official properties across the country.

“A committee has been formed under the supervision of Defence Minister Pervaiz Khattak to draft a plan of action regarding the appropriate use of these properties.”

Further, members of the cabinet approved a summary to establish the Centre of Excellence in collaboration with Turkey in addition to an agreement of bilateral cooperation for technical training between Pakistan and Japan.

The cabinet also ratified a summary for the appointment of Major General Arif as the director-general of the Anti-Narcotics Force, sources added.

In the meeting, Prime Minister Imran Khan was briefed on the task force of the five million housing project. The premier is expected to inaugurate the housing project in the mid of October, sources said.

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