Punjab set to announce Rs5.37 trillion budget today

Punjab govt is estimated to announce annual development plan of Rs700 billion in budget

Our Correspondent
June 13, 2024
A Punjab Assembly session is underway in this undated image. — Facebook/Malik Muhammad Ahmad Khan/File

LAHORE: The Maryam Nawaz-led Punjab government is set to lay out its budget of about Rs5.37 trillion on Thursday (today) with an increase in salaries and minimum wages in line with the federal government's financial blueprint.

The News reported that Punjab is estimated to announce an annual development plan of Rs700 billion in the budget, while the province is expected to receive Rs3.7 trillion from the federal divisible pool under the National Finance Commission (NFC) award.

The provincial government, which has set the revenue target of over Rs1.025 trillion, will earmark Rs595 billion for salaries, Rs445 billion for pensions, Rs840 billion for service delivery costs, and Rs700 billion for the development budget. Specific allocations feature Rs30 billion for Ramazan Package and Rs8 billion for the Central Business District (CBD).

Only 246 new projects will be launched, out of the 1,863 total schemes that are outlined in the development budget plans. The other 1,617 initiatives are ongoing. More than Rs22 billion is allocated for the roads sector, while Rs2 billion is set up for special education and Rs3.5 billion for literacy and non-formal education.

Rs3 billion has been allocated for the population welfare, Rs2 billion for water supply and sanitation, Rs1.7 billion for social welfare, Rs14 billion for local bodies and community development, over Rs10 billion for industries development and Rs37.3 billion for the planning and development.

The government has specified Rs 4.8 billion for sports and youth affairs, Rs76.5 billion for specialised health care and Rs33.89 billion for primary health care.

Further, no new tax will be levied in the provincial budget for the fiscal year 2024-25 while the focus will be on recovery of taxes already levied to boost resources. Punjab will ensure the utilisation of natural resources and government assets to increase the revenue generation.

The government has been prioritising the education, health and social security while the implementation on the mega projects would be done through public private partnership. The government will continue the subsidy in food and transport sector while industry and agriculture sectors would be given special attention to increase the provincial productivity.

Both local and international investors will be given equal opportunities for investment. The investment will also be made in the IT sector of the productive sectors for economic development. The difficulties of the manufacturers and the grievances of the business community will be redressed in the budget.