Punjab’s and Balochistan’s Development Funds to Face a Cut for Next Budget

In the consolidated development budget of provinces plus the federal government, Punjab province’s development spending is facing a cut of Rs. 45.72 billion and Balochistan is reporting a reduction of Rs. 48.43 billion. Meanwhile, Sindh and KP’s development funds are registering an increase.

The budget documents exclusively with Propakistani reveal that the government has approved a development budget of Rs. 2,184 billion for the next fiscal year 2022-23 with an increase of Rs. 50 billion against the total outlay of Rs. 2,135 for the outgoing financial year.

The Annual Plan Coordination Committee approved the total outlay of Rs. 800 billion for the federal development budget whereas Rs. 1,384 billion has been allocated as the provincial development share in the next financial year due to start on 1 July.

The recently approved outlay was announced by the Federal Minister for Planning, Ahsan Iqbal, who said that the projects for higher education, energy, and road infrastructure have been prioritized in the development plans.

The Federal Public Sector Development Program (PSDP), which is earmarked at Rs. 800 billion, also relied on foreign funding of Rs. 70 billion, and the provincial development budget also consists of Rs. 276 billion from foreign financing.

The documents reveal that at least Rs. 392 billion have been allocated for various divisions and ministries during the next fiscal year. Regarding water and road infrastructure projects, at least Rs. 171 billion will be earmarked for the Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) and the National Highway Authority (NHA).

An amount of Rs. 96 billion have been allocated for Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan in the total development outlay, while Rs. 50 billion has been fixed for the merged districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP).

As per the details, Rs. 585 billion has been allocated for development projects in Punjab, and Rs. 355 billion will be spent on development projects in Sindh during the next fiscal year.

Also, Rs. 300 billion has been fixed for projects in KP, while Rs. 143 billion has been allocated for Balochistan.

Punjab’s development budget decreased to Rs. 45.72 billion as against the development budget of the outgoing financial year, which was Rs. 630 billion.

The development budget for Sindh is Rs. 138 billion more than that in the current fiscal year, which is Rs. 217 billion.

Similarly, documents have revealed an increase of Rs. 53.71 billion in the development budget for KP against the current fiscal year allocation of Rs. 246 billion. A decrease of Rs. 48.43  billion in the Balochistan development budget proposal has been proposed against the allocation of Rs. 191 billion as an annual development program for the current fiscal year.

The approved development outlay will be presented for approval to the National Economic Council (NEC), which is expected to meet in the next few days.

Faiz Paracha is a seasoned broadcast journalist with over 15 years’ experience in reporting and e...



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