Friday, March 12, 2010

Pakistan resolves centre-provincial mining dispute

Pakistan's parliamentary committee on constitutional reforms has resolved the issue of sharing mineral and natural resources between the provinces and the federal government as it recommended joint control by the two levels of government with a 50% share in profit.

According to PakTribune sources, nationalist parties demanded to amend Article 172 of the Constitution and wanted ownership of minerals and ports by provinces instead of the federal government. However, stiff resistance to the proposal came from the Punjab government and from both the factions of the Pakistan Muslim League.

Article 172 reads: “Any property which has no rightful owner shall, if located in a province, vests in the government of that province, and in every other case, in the federal government. (2) All lands, minerals and other things of value within the constitutional shelf or underlying the ocean within the territorial waters of Pakistan shall vest in the federal government.”

Sources said after the resolution of the main issue on authority of controlling natural resources, the constitutional reforms committee is inching towards consensus on the issue of provincial authority.

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