Resuming operations of the Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) will entail a new process, which will require a minimum of USD 100 million, said Minister of Industries and Production, Mr. Abdul Razzak Dawood at the meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Industries held at Parliament House on Wednesday under the Chairmanship of Senator Ahmed Khan. He further stated that various options such as public/private partnerships and foreign operational partners could be explored to revive this virtually dead enterprise that is entailing expenditure on account of pensions and salaries worth PKR 12 core a month.
The meeting was attended amongst others by Senator Sitara Ayaz, Senator Kulsoom Perveen, Senator Barrister Muhammad Ali Khan Saif, Senator Nauman Wazir Khattak, and senior officers from the Ministry of Industries and Production, Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) and National Productivity Organization.
While deliberating over the plight that has ailed PSM for decades, the Minister for Industries and Production, Mr. Abdul Razzak Dawood stressed the need for business acumen for its revival. Endorsing the views of the Minister Senator Nauman Wazir Khattak opined that the ‘government has no business to be in business’. This, he said, was the businessman’s prerogative, because he would go through any lengths to attain his goals.
Senator Sitara Ayaz said that it was refreshing to listen to the Minster and his vision regarding this enterprise. However, she said that she did not approve of privatization. She regretted the removal of Chairman PSM, despite Committee recommendations against it. Senator Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif was of the opinion that this was a breach of privilege and that strict notice must be taken regarding this.
Chairman Committee, Senator Ahmed Khan instructed the Ministry for submission of all record of appointment of the new CEO and removal of the old. He said that on behalf of the Committee, he hoped that a sound decision is taken and that Pakistan benefits from this golden enterprise that has been lost. He said that a decision regarding this issue could only be taken once the meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) is conducted on Monday.
While discussing the petition of Mr. Ali Ahsan, Assistant Manager, National Productivity Organization, Ministry of Industries and Production, Chairman Committee Senator Ahmed Khan instructed that all suspension orders against Mr. Ali Ahsan be revoked immediately. He also said that a new CEO must be hired within 60 days.