ISLAMABAD: The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) has on Wednesday approved several projects worth about 52 billion rupees in climate change, energy, health and higher education sectors.
The meeting chaired by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar approved the PhD Scholarship Programme proposed by the Higher Education Commission at the cost of 18,810.916 million rupees including foreign exchange component of 17,714.698 million rupees.
The programme will allow to the HEC to send 1500 PhD students to top ranking US universities under the US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor.
HEC will provide counseling and guidance facilities to candidates for taking GRE, TOFEL tests and proposal writing to assist students in seeking admission in US universities. ECNEC directed HEC to ensure participation of students and scholars from all over the country on merit.
Green Pakistan Programme approved
ECNEC approved the the Green Pakistan Programme – Revival of Forestry Resources in Pakistan at an estimated cost of Rs. 3652.142 million proposed by the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform.
The programme aims at plantation of indigenous and fast growing local tree species along canal and road sides in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh.
This includes olive and kikar phulai forests in Kala Chitta, Pabbi Rasul and Fort Monroe in Punjab, mangrove forests in Sindh, juniper in Balochistan and other plantation to check erosion in Giligit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir.
Expanded Immunisation Programme
The committee approved the projects of Expanded Programme of Immunisation at a total cost of 4,998.91 million rupees in Balochistan with foreign exchange component of 713.93 million rupees; Khyber Pakhtunkhwa at a total cost of 6, 493.55 million rupees including foreign exchange component of 1, 260 million rupees
The Sindh Immunisation Support Programme was approved at a total cost of 8, 048.92 million rupees including foreign exchange component of 2, 730 million rupees.
ECNEC allowed the finance division to release development funds for the 1230 MW Combined Cycle Power Plant at Haveli Bahadur Shah and 1223 MW Combined Cycle Power Plant in Balloki.
It approved the compliance report on Neelum-Jhelum Hydroelectric Project with the direction to WAPDA to formulate proper policy guidelines and adhere the timelines.