ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar delivered the budget speech during the National Assembly session held here today.
During his speech, the minister said that the government’s priority for the next fiscal year was to increase the tax revenue.
“The tax refund system will be improved. Our tax to GDP ratio is less than 11pc, the lowest in the neighbourhood. We will need to change our approach to tax payments or we will not be able to progress. We are currently at a point where we need to take loans to pay for past loans and salaries,” he said.
Talking about the total debt of the country, the minister said that Pakistan’s total debt has reached Rs31 trillion.
“We are deeply indebted thanks to high-interest loans. Foreign exchange reserves had dropped below $10 billion. The current account deficit had reached a historic peak of $20bn, while the trade deficit had reached $32bn,” he said, adding that the fiscal deficit was more than Rs2.26tr.
Here’s what PTI’s first budget includes:
Rs 100 mln allocated for Commerce, Rs 202.828 mln for Textile in PSDP
The government has allocated Rs 100 million for one new scheme of the Ministry of Commerce and Rs. 202. 828 million for Textiles Industry Division in one on- going and two new schemes in Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2019-20 for the promotion of trade and commerce in the country.
According to the details, the government has allocated Rs 100 million for remodeling and expansion of Karachi Expo Centre, Component -1 to develop and promote the local industry and to attract the foreign and local investment in the country.
Rs2,843.094 m allocated for housing sector
The government has allocated an amount of 2,843.094 million for 43 ongoing projects of Housing and Work Division for the fiscal year 2019-20.
The financial allocation with major chunk included Rs300.000 million for dualization and improvement of Mandra Chakwal Road (64 KM).
Rs 2,343.293 mln allocated for Industries and Production
The government has allocated 2,343.293 million for different development projects of the Ministry of Industries and Production.
In PSDP 2019-20, the government is intended to spent an amount of Rs 971.330 million on national strategic program for acquisition of industrial technology including feasibility (knowledge economy initiatives).
Rs1700 m allocated for Defence Production Division
The federal government has allocated Rs1,700 million for the two ongoing schemes of Defence Production Division under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2019-20.
Rs 120,768 mln earmarked for ongoing, new hydel projects
The government has earmarked a sum of Rs.120,768.352 million for various ongoing and new hydel projects.
According to the budgetary documents, an amount of Rs.120,071.352 million has been earmarked for ongoing 12 hydel projects while Rs.697 million for five new schemes in the PSDP 2019-20.
Those rejecting budget harmed economy in past: Dr Firdous
ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan has said that the opposition harmed the economy in past and were now criticising the budget.
In a tweet, Dr Firdous said that opposition is doing politics on budget and hindering the path of constitution.
“Budget is prepared for Pakistan and its people,” she added.
She said that proceedings in parliament and opposition leaders’ salaries can also be ensured after approval of the budget. Those who have destroyed economy now want to harm people, she continued.
SC upholds ban on recruitment in PIA
ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has ordered the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) to submit a petition seeking withdrawal of another SC decision on regularisation of contract employees in Karachi.
The move by apex court came after PIA counsel Naeem Bukhari sought permission for recruitment in the airline in today’s hearing. On March 31, 2018, the apex court had placed a ban on new recruitment in the airline.
The counsel argued that the SC’s Karachi registry had ordered the PIA administration to regularise all the airline’s contract employees in Karachi. He contended that the SC’s earlier order on ban on recruitment refrained the airline from executing its latter order to regularise the employees.
Justice Ijazul Ahsan remarked that the PIA had already inducted much more employees than it requires.
Sami Ibrahim incident: PFUJ appreciates the rejoinder posted by Fed. Min. Fawad Ch.
KARACHI: PFUJ in a statement appreciated the rejoinder posted by Federal Minister Fawad Chaudhry regarding the slapping incident:
According to minister, the background of the incident of slapping Sami Ibrahim was that for advertisements government had formed categories A, B, C and D according to the ratings of channels.
“Due to that, 70% of the channels were dropped from A and B categories. Hence they were endeavoring (despite low rankings) to get themselves in the A and B categories.
“Sami Ibrahim claiming since BOL had done a lot for us they should be put in A category. Problem was that if I had given BOL Rs. 20million category, other channels would have also asked for it. That would have simply nullified the basic idea of forming categories itself.
“On my refusal, Sami Ibrahim had started a perpetual campaign against me. Meanwhile, I received an application from a senior reported that BOL was not paying his dues. Does a channel that could not pay Rs. 40,000 to its employee deserve to remain in business?
“After that, the drive against me was accelerated and I was declared RAW’s agent. Today when I came across this man he started insulting me. There is a limit to tolerating abuse. I slapped him and that is the only answer to blackmailing.”
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