Rs800bn earmarked for PSDP in next fiscal year

Mehtab Haider
Sunday, Jun 05, 2022

ISLAMABAD: The Annual Plan Coordination Committee (APCC) on Saturday recommended the allocation of Rs2,184 billion for the National Development Plan of the National Economic Council (NEC) in the next budget 2022-23, including a federal development outlay of Rs800 billion and provincial development plans of Rs1,384 billion.

The Sindh and KP government ministers raised objections to the reduced allocation of funds for the federal Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) in their respective areas. The National Economic Council is now scheduled to meet under the chairmanship of PM Shehbaz Sharif on June 7 for approving the national development outlay and macroeconomic framework for the next budget.

The APCC also approved a macroeconomic framework for the next budget with a real GDP growth rate target of 5 percent for the next budget against 5.97 percent for the outgoing fiscal year. The government has projected that inflation will remain in double digits but expected to remain in the range of 11.5 percent, however, many economists have termed the government-made projections on lower side in the context of stabilisation program being pursued under the advice of the IMF programme to withdraw fuel and energy subsidies and then raising taxation in the coming budget.

The federal Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) for outgoing fiscal year 2021-22 was revised downward from Rs900 billion to Rs550 billion and in the working paper, it was projected that the actual utilisation of the PSDP funds would be standing at Rs498 billion till the end of June 2022.

The APCC, which met under the Chairmanship of Federal Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal on Saturday, approved the Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) outlay of Rs800 billion for the next fiscal year 2022-23.

The government allocated Rs60 billion for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) achievement programme executed by the parliamentarians in the coming budget. The government inserted Mainline-1 (ML-1) as part of the PSDP and made allocation of just Rs5 billion in the next budget. The government allocated Rs18 billion for Diamer Bhasha Dam (for dam part) and Rs7 billion for its land acquisition. The total cost of the Bhasha Dam is estimated at Rs479.686 billion. For ERRA, the government made zero allocation in the next budget.

Federal Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal told reporters after the APCC meeting that the PMLN-led government had left over Rs1,000 billion in 2017-18, which was reduced to Rs500 billion as the national exchequer was emptied. He said that now the government would finance all the projects of national importance. To a query, he said the PTI government achieved 5.97 percent growth mainly because of rebasing of national accounts.

Out of Rs800 billion allocation for the PSDP for 2022-23, the government earmarked Rs433 billion for infrastructure, including Rs84 billion for energy, Rs227 billion for transport and communication, Rs83 billion for water and Rs39 billion for Physical Planning and Housing sector. The government made allocation of Rs144 billion for social sector in the coming budget against an allocation of Rs103 billion in the outgoing fiscal year. Out of the total Rs144 billion allocation for social sector, the government earmarked Rs23 billion for health and population, Rs45 billion for education, including Higher Education Commission (HEC), SDGs achievement programme Rs60 billion and others Rs16 billion. For the provinces and special areas AJK and GB, the government made an allocation of Rs96 billion and merged districts of KP Rs50 billion. The government allocated Rs16 billion for Governance, Food and Agriculture Rs13 billion and Industries Rs5 billion. The APCC was informed that the Finance Division indicated Rs500 billion for PSDP in the next budget. The demands received from ministries/ divisions for development funds was to the tune of Rs1,713 billion for approved ongoing and new projects. The major chunk of demands received from M/o Water Resources (Rs279 billion), M/o Communication (Rs317 billion), PAEC (Rs175 billion), Power Division (Rs98 billion), Aviation Division (Rs30 billion) and HEC (Rs45 billion), etc.