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June 29, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. Pakistan needs to `do more` for double IMF payout
• Pakistan will have to take at least two more `prior actions` to secure two combined tranches of about $1.85 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by the end of July or early August.
• Top government sources said these prior actions which will be in addition to a series of structural benchmarks for the performance review would be necessary for the Fund`s executive board to approve the merger of the seventh and eighth quarterly reviews of the 39-month, $6bn loan programme that originally began in July 2019.
• Finance Minister Miftah Ismail announced on Tuesday that Pakistan had received the Memorandum of Economic and Fiscal Policies (MEFP) from the IMF for the combined seventh and eighth reviews
2. NA almost completes budget process; approves 131 demands for grants
• The National Assembly on June 28, 2022 completed the process of approving all 131 demands for grants of various ministries and divisions worth over Rs5.53 trillion after rejecting 266 cut motions of opposition members on eight selected ministries af ter a debate in a non-serious environment, paving the way for the passage of the finance bill, commonly known as the federal budget, on Wednesday.
• The lower house of the parliament had already approved on Monday 83 demands for grants worth Rs4.57 trillion of those 30 ministries and divisions on which the opposition parties had not moved any cut motions.
• The opposition members had submitted a total of 266 cut motions demanding a symboliccut on allocations of eight ministries, including communications, energy, foreign affairs, interior, narcotics control and railways
3. Cabinet approves hazardous waste management policy
• The federal cabinet on June 28, 2022 approved the National Hazardous Waste Management Policy 2022 with consensus which will be passed on to provinces and implemented at the federal level for international compliance.
• At a briefing, Minister for Climate Change Senator Sherry Rehman said: `Before Pakistan becomes a dumping ground for our own and the world`s hazardous waste, the government has gone ahead and made a detailed national policy to manage hazardous waste. In line with our sustainable climate goals of protecting public health and the environment from the devastating impacts of chemicals and hazardous waste materials and ensuring that our imports of such waste is tested for contaminants as well as managed instead of acting as a dumping ground for hazardous waste materials, we will be putting in place a policy for managing hazardous waste that works along scientific lines for the communities most affected by waste pollution.
4. Balochistan cabinet approves deployment of security forces at highways
• The Balochistan cabinet has approved deployment of security forces at all national highways in the province for providing foolproof security to development projects.
• A meeting of the cabinet presided over by Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo on June 28, 2022 took decisions on some important issues.
• The meeting had a 30-point agenda, including security of foreign investors. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had during his recent visit to Gwadar expressed concern over the lack of security of foreign investors and their companies` staff
5. Balochistan Assembly passes supplementary budget
• The Balochistan Assembly on June 28, 2022 passed the supplementary budget of Rs10.52 billion for the fiscal year 2021-22 without any objection from the opposition parties.
• Finance Minister Sardar Abdul Rehman Khetran moved 16 demands for the draft in the house. The session was presided over by Deputy Speaker Sardar Babar Khan Musakhail. The members of the opposition parties, including JUI-F, BNP-Mengal and PkMAP, were present in the house, but they did not submit any cut motion.
• The highest amount of over Rs1.63bn would be spent on the expenditures of the home department. Another big allocation of Rs1.30bn is for the primary and secondary health sector. An amount of over Rs1.17bn has been approved for specialised healthcare and medical education. The house also approved an amount of Rs880.12 million for the Provincial Disaster Management Authority. The approved budget includes an amount of Rs630.14m for mineral resources