Punjab unveils Rs4,480b budget | Maqvi News


Punjab unveils Rs4,480b budget | Maqvi News

CM Maryam approves metro bus projects in three cities n Seeks plan for underground train project in Lahore n Rs655b allocated for development projects n Rs25.75b for transport n Rs10b for Nawaz Sharif IT City n Rs11b earmarked for provision of free books.

LAHORE  –  With a total outlay of Rs 4480 billion, Punjab Fi­nance Minister Mujtaba Shujaur Rehman Mon­day presented the pro­vincial budget for the year 2023-24 before the Punjab Assembly amid rumpus created by the Opposition. 

Presenting the budget proposals during the Punjab Assembly ses­sion, the finance minis­ter assured the House that Punjab’s journey of progress would restart with merit and transpar­ency being its hallmark. 

The overall volume of the budget for the financial year 2023-24 was revealed to be Rs4,480.700 billion, with estimated rev­enue collection at Rs 3,331.700 billion. The finance minister told the House that un­der the NFC Award, Punjab would receive Rs2,706.400 billion.

The budget estimates included the nine-month expenditure expended by the caretaker govern­ment and the coming three months. The minis­ter said that no new taxes have been imposed in the budget for the finan­cial year 2023-24. The finance minister placed a picture of PML-N su­premo Nawaz Sharif on the desk beside him during his budget speech, while the opposition members led by Rana Aftab Ah­mad Khan of Sunni Ijtihad Coun­cil surrounded the speaker’s dais to lodge a protest against the budget. They also tore apart copies of the budget speech leav­ing enough litter for the Assem­bly staff to clean after the ses­sion. The Opposition rejected the budget terming it ‘fake,’ while chanting slogans against the government. The finance minis­ter, however, continued with his budget speech ignoring the pro­test from the opposition bench­es. The minister pledged to en­sure the welfare of the people while presenting what he termed as the government’s first peo­ple-friendly budget. Rehman em­phasized the government’s com­mitment to setting an example of good governance in Punjab.

He has announced the govern­ment’s plans to establish an IT City in the province and launch an air ambulance service and the Punjab Education Programme. Regarding specific initiatives, he highlighted that Ramzan Relief Package was aimed at assisting vulnerable segments of society with an allocation of Rs30 bil­lion. The minister also stressed the activation of a price con­trol system and the adoption of a zero-tolerance policy against hoarding and profiteering.

Shujaur Rehman further an­nounced the establishment of an IT city in Punjab costing Rs10 billion to promote IT, along with the imminent launch of the air ambulance service. He disclosed the initiation of the Punjab Edu­cation Programmewith an allo­cation of Rs2 billion.

The minister assured farmers of comprehensive facilities un­der one roof, without imposing any new taxes. 

As outlined in the budget document, significant alloca­tions include Rs473.6 billion for healthcare, Rs596 billion for ed­ucation, Rs382 billion for in­frastructure development, and Rs127.7 billion for local govern­ment projects. Funds have also been earmarked for various ini­tiatives, including a Rs30 billion Ramazan package, Rs11 billion for free student textbooks, and Rs12.5 billion for the Central Business District and PKLI en­dowment fund.

Furthermore, Rs11.4 billion has been allocated for a hygiene expansion program, Rs264 bil­lion for settling wheat debts, and Rs25.6 billion for agricul­tural subsidies.

The Assembly will debate the budget in its sitting to be held on Thursday (March 21). 

Also, before presentation of the budget in the Punjab Assem­bly, the Punjab cabinet gave its nod to the Rs4,480 billion bud­get for the fiscal year 2023-24. Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz Sharif chaired the cabinet meet­ing, which was attended by min­isters, the Punjab chief secretary and other officials.

In addition to approving the budget, the cabinet also en­dorsed amendments to the Pun­jab Sales Tax Service Act and sanctioned the supplementa­ry budget for the periods of Ju­ly-October, November-February, and March 2024.

Meanwhile, as per the bud­get documents, the non-tax rev­enue has been estimated at Rs 231.80 billion with an increase of 42 percent. In the current fi­nancial year, Rs 513.73 billion have been set aside for salaries, Rs 392.10 billion for pensions and Rs 627.70 billion have been allocated for local governments. 

According to budget docu­ments, the development bud­get for the financial year 2023-24 is estimated at Rs 655 billion while the amount allocated for projects, programs and grants supported by foreign aid is Rs 113.2 billion. 36 percent of the development budget consists of the social sector, whereas 39 percent would be expended on infrastructure. The allocations for production sector and ser­vices sector would be 8 and 4 per cent respectively. Similar­ly, 13 percent of the develop­ment budget has been allocated for various programs and public welfare special initiatives. Also, Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz Sharif Monday approved the decision in principle to start the metro bus project in three cities of Punjab. She gave this approval while chairing a meet­ing with Quaid Muslim League-Nawaz Muhammad Nawaz Shar­if, in Lahore. 

The meeting reviewed the transport sector projects in La­hore. The Chief Minister also sought the plan for an under­ground train project in Lahore.

Maqvi News #Maqvi #Maqvinews #Maqvi_news #Maqvi#News #info@maqvi.com


Source link