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June 12, 2019

Rs1.3 bn spent more on various foreign cases


June 12, 2019

ISLAMABAD: More than Rs1.3 billion has been spent additionally in the current fiscal on various issues —including the foreign litigation cases — by the sitting government.

The exact amount that has been spent additionally on Karkey litigation, Al-Tuwairi and Al-Iteefaq Steel Production Company Limited and for payment to hire a solicitor for pursuing cases in the UK, and for special contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for Palestinian Refugees stands at Rs1.303 billion.

According to the budget documents, the NAB has spent an additional Rs192 million for payments to law firms hired for international arbitration in the case of Broadsheet Versus NAB. The Interior ministry has spent an additional Rs42 million for hiring solicitor for pursuing cases in the United Kingdom. However, the budget documents do not mention the names of cases that the interior ministry is pursuing in the UK.

An additional amount of Rs742 million was spent on license fee for software and fee to sustain the World Bank’s P for R project. Documents also unfold that the Industries and Production Division has spent Rs110 million in the case of Dr Hilal Hussain Al-Tuwairi and Al-Iteefaq Steel Production Company Limited Versus Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

The Power Division has spent an additional amount of Rs190.318 million just to make payments to the legal firm for Karkey litigation. In this head, an amount of Rs245 million was allocated in the budget 2018-19, but the Power Division sought the supplementary grant of Rs190.318 million meaning that the total amount has swollen to Rs435.322

The Ministry of Energy (Power Division) and Finance Division are in the process of finalising ways and means to arrange $56 million to be deposited in an escrow account in an European Bank as part of arbitration claims of M/s Karkey Karadeniz Elektrik Uretim A.S.

The Government of Pakistan deposited $50 million in an escrow account on May 30, 2019 as part of litigation with Turkish firm M/s Karkey rental power plant.

The Power Division earlier moved a summary for anticipatory approval of Chairman Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet for provision of grant as an interim security in an Escrow Account in a European Bank to proceed further with the proceeding in the case regarding arbitration claim against the GoP.

Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs Dr Hafeez Shaikh in his capacity as the Chairman ECC has approved the summary which requires: (i) opening of an Escrow Account for $50 million in a European Bank; and (ii) supplementary grant of $56 million.

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