Govt on Schedule to Present New Fiscal Year’s Budget in June

The government is likely to present the budget for the next financial year i.e. 2022-23 in June 2022, suggests the budget circular issued by the Finance Ministry.

The budget calendar presents activities and actions that are required to be finalized by the stakeholders to complete the budget-making process for the financial year 2022-23. The budget calendar also specifies the timelines for each activity.

In compliance with the articles of the Constitution of Pakistan, Public Finance Management Act, 2019, and Budget Manual 2020, Finance Division prepares a budget for each financial year as a key policy document of the Federal Government.

Budget Call Circular containing a budget calendar, processes, instructions, forms for preparation and submission of detailed budget Actual (FY 2020-21), Revised Estimates (FY 2021-22) and Budget Estimates (FY 2022-23) relating to Receipts, Current & Development Expenditure of the Federal Government is being issued.

The Medium-Term Indicative Budget Ceilings (IBCs) issued by Budget Wing, Finance Division in April 2021, for Current and Development Budget for three years i.e. 2021-22, 2022-23, and 2023-24, may be considered as baseline for submission of Budget Estimates.

Receipts, Current and Development Expenditure Estimates (Forms I – III) may be provided to Budget Wing, Finance Division before March 15, 2022, by the respective Principal Accounting Officer (PAO). The remaining information may also be provided as per the schedule given in Budget Calendar.

Foreign Exchange Budget Actual (FY 2020-21), Revised Estimates (FY 2021-22), and Budget Estimates (FY 2022-23) may also be provided as per attached FEB Forms (I-VI) in accordance with the specific instructions and general guidelines.

The timeline for Revised Estimates (2021-22) and Budget Estimates (2022-23) of Federal Government Receipts (Form-I) and the last date for Budget Proposals relating to Tax & Non-Tax Revenues for inclusion in Finance Bill 2022-23 is March 15, 2022.

Submission of proposed Current & Development Expenditure Budget Estimates (Form-II and Form-III) is also March 15, 2022. Budget Review Committee’s meetings are scheduled for the fourth week of March. The Budget Strategy Paper Finance Division is scheduled for April 15, 2022. The issuance of IBCs for current and development budget for the third week of April 2022. APCC & NEC meetings at Planning Division & Finance Division are scheduled for April – May 2022. Submission of BO/NIS Forms for current budget for April 25 to May 10, 2022.

Submission of BO/NIS Forms by Ministries / Divisions for development budget is scheduled for May 10 to May 17, 2022. Moreover, the completion of all Budget Documents, Schedules, Summaries for the Cabinet, etc. are scheduled for the end of May 2022.

The presentation of the Budget to the Cabinet and the Parliament is proposed for the first week of June 2022.

Budget Preparation Process

Legal framework on annual budget is available in Articles 78 to 84 of the Constitution. The Public Finance Management Act, 2019 provides legal cover to budgeting and financial management. The Finance Division has also issued various instructions from time to time, which are available on Finance Division’s website.

This section sets out the process for the preparation of the Budget 2022-23. All Federal Ministries / Divisions will prepare their budget on Performance & Output Based Budgeting System. The following are details of steps involved in the budget preparation process as outlined in the ‘Budget Calendar’.

  1. Issuance of ‘Budget Call Circular 2022-23’ to the Principal Accounting Officers (PAOs)
    As a first step, the Finance Division will issue a “Budget Call Circular” to the PAOs which contains instructions, forms, and timelines required to be completed by the respective PAOs.
  2. Submission of the Budget forecast by the Principal Accounting Officer
    The Indicative Budget Ceilings issued by the Finance Division in April 2021, for the current and development budget of three years i.e. 2021-22, 2022-23, and 2023-24 will be considered as baseline for submission of Budget Estimates 2022-2025 under Form III. Moreover, PAO will submit estimates keeping in view the Public Finance Management Act, 2019 and priorities of the Federal Government.
  3. Review and approval of budget estimates and additional demands (current + development) by the Demand Review Committee
    If needed, Principal Accounting Officer (PAO) will be invited to make presentations on their budget proposals to the Demand Review Committee (comprising Finance Division, Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Division, and Economic Affairs Division). The Demand Review Committee would consider and approve additional expenditure (if any) of the Ministries. The Demand Review Committee will discuss past performance, current year’s budgetary allocations, and ceilings for the medium-term budgetary years. Discussions/deliberations will focus on ‘outputs’ (services) to be delivered and policy priorities outlined by the Federal Government under the respective Performance Agreement.
  4. Preparation of Budget Strategy Paper and its presentation in the Cabinet
    Finance Division shall prepare Budget Strategy Paper and seek approval of the Federal Government in accordance with section 3 of the PFM Act 2019.
  5. Issuance of Indicative Budget Ceilings for current and development budget to all PAOs
    Federal Ministries/Divisions will receive the confirmed indicative budget ceilings after approval of the Budget Strategy Paper by the Cabinet. The ceilings for the current budget are prepared by Finance Division. One line ceiling for development budget is issued by Finance Division in favor of Planning Division. However, Demand/PAO-wise ceilings for the development budget are prepared and issued by the Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Division.
  6. Filling of the BO/NIS Forms
    The Ministries / Divisions / Departments will go through the instructions to fill in the BO/NIS Forms to be submitted to Budget Wing, Finance Division as per specified timelines.
  7. Submission of forms by Ministries / Divisions for Current Budget and Development Budget
    In the presence of ceilings, the concerned CFAO will assure the quality of BO/NIS forms and give their recommendations (if any) to the concerned Principal Accounting Officer.