Federal Govt unveils Rs1.324 trillion development budget

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ISLAMABAD (APP) – Pursuing an approach of balanced development across the country to help promote harmony and national integration, the government on Friday unveiled Rs 1.324 trillion Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) for the fiscal year 2020-21, with special focus on under and less developed areas.

Out of the total PSDP outlay, Rs 650 billion have been set aside for the federal PSDP whereas a sum of Rs 674 billion has been allocated for the provinces, according to budget document.

The National Economic Council (NEC) approved the PSDP allocations on June 10, with foreign assistance of Rs222.47 billion.

“The PSDP 2020-21 has been prepared under challenging times, addressing key priorities of the government as well as Covid response needs,” according to the budgetary document, which has been finalized by the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms through an extensive consultative and participatory process.

For the upcoming fiscal year, the challenges emanating from COVID-19 enhances importance of public investment to trigger job creation, reviving economic activity and at the same time alleviating poverty.

A special programme to mitigate COVID-19 impact, with an outlay of Rs 70 billion, will focus on education, sewerage, solid waste management, clean drinking water and upgrading existing health facilities.

This will be executed in collaboration with provincial and areas governments.

The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) continued to remain in focus and projects had been fully funded while special funds have been kept for railways, water resource projects and housing sector.

Meanwhile, out of total Rs650 billion federal PSDP, the government allocated Rs 418.675 billion for federal ministries, Rs 158.324 billion for corporations including National Highway Authority (Rs 118.67 billion) and PEPCO (Rs 39.64 billion), Rs 3 billion for Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA), and Rs 70 billion for COVID-19 Responsive and other natural calamities programme.

Out of total outlay, the government proposed an allocation of Rs 81.25 billion for water resource division, Rs 1.32 billion for Aviation Division, Rs80 million for Board of Investment, Rs 47.8 billion for Cabinet Division, Rs 5 billion for Climate Change Division, Rs103.5 million for Commerce Division, Rs254.7 million for Communication Division (other than NHA), Rs 660.116 million for Defence Division while Rs1.58 billion have been allocated for Defence Production Division.

The government also earmarked Rs 282.9 million for Establishment Division, Rs 4.526 billion for Federal Education and Professional Training Division, Rs 66.66 billion for Finance Division, Rs 10.34 million for Foreign Affairs Division, Rs 29.47 billion for Higher Education Commission, Rs 8.736 billion for Housing and Works Division, Rs 256 million for Human Rights Division, Rs 800 million for Industries and Production Division, Rs 360.9 million for Information and Broadcasting Division and Rs 6.673 billion for Information Technology and Telecom Division.

Similarly, an amount of Rs 929.5 million have been allocated for Interprovincial Coordination Division, Rs 14.76 billion for Interior Division, Rs 52.424 billion for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan Division, Rs 991.424 million for Law and Justice Division, Rs 2.683 billion for Maritime Affairs Division, Rs 53.9 million for Narcotics Control Division, Rs12 billion for National Food Security and Research Division, Rs 14.5 billion for National Health Services Regulations and Coordination Division, Rs 194.74 million for National History and Literary Heritage Division, and Rs 23.3 billion for Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission.

The government also allocated Rs 350 million for Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority, Rs 1.786 billion for Petroleum Division, Rs 3.545 billion for Planning, Development and Reform Division, Rs 135 million for Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division, Rs24 billion for Railways Division, Rs 53.9 million for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Division, Rs 1.7 billion for Revenue Division, Rs 4.458 billion for Science and Technological Research Division, and Rs 4.97 billion for SUPPARCO.

In addition, the document revealed that to augment PSDP, resources of the private sector would be leveraged with the help of Public Private Partnership Authority (PPA), attracting domestic and foreign direct investment in commercially viable projects.

PPPA will reduce transaction cost, ensure appropriate regulatory control and provide legal and economic mechanism to facilitate development initiatives. During FY 2020-21, four projects with tentative cost of Rs 300 billion and estimated investment of Rs 50 billion would be implemented in PPP mode.

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