LAHORE - The PML-N new government in Punjab has presented its budget for 2013-14 with total outlay of about Rs 897.57 billion. Rs 290 billion have been allocated for annual development plans.
The assembly session was presided over by Speaker Rana Muhammad Iqbal while Finance Minister Mujtaba Shujaur Rehman presented the budget.
The budget, with a deficit of around Rs 30 billion, has estimated general revenue receipts of around Rs 872 billion while Rs 702 billion is expected to be received from the federal divisible pool, besides estimated revenue of about Rs 170 billion from provincial tax and non-tax income.
Of Rs 290 billion ADP, Rs240 billion will be spent on annual plans while Rs 50 billion will go to other uplift projects. The 2013-14 ADP allocation has been increased by 16 per cent as compared to that of 2012-13 and, if compared with amended ADP of 2012-13, it is escalated by Rs 114 billion for the upcoming budget.
The details include Rs 90.79 billion for social sector, Rs 90.71 billion for infrastructure, Rs 11.9 billion for productive fields, Rs 13.55 billion for services, Rs 9 billion for miscellaneous, Rs 24.84 billion for special programmes and Rs 50 billion for uplift priorities.
The current expenditures for 2013-14 are expected at about Rs 607.56 billion, up 10 per cent. Details of current expenditure include Rs 239 billion for local bodies, Rs 94 billion for public order and safety, Rs 101 billion for general administration, Rs 75 billion for pensions and salaries and Rs 36 billion for subsidies. The provincial government allocated around 4 per cent of total budget (Rs 40.5 billion) for education while Rs 44.63 billion were set for health.
More rapid bus service schemes will be launched in Lahore while the service will also be started in Multan, Pindi and Faisalabad, without mentioning allocations in the budget speech.
The finance minister, presenting the budget, announced 10 per cent raise in pay and pension of public sector employees in line with the federal government decision.
Despite the pre-election commitment of raising minimum salary of workers to Rs 15,000, the minister announced that the minimum monthly wage would be Rs 10,000.
Levying tax on clubs and imposing capital gain tax on property sale and purchase, the minister announced the present tax target had been increased by enhancing tax ratio.
The govt has also introduced a tax with the name of luxury tax to be imposed on the houses of two and more than two kanals in the range of Rs 0.5m to Rs 1.5 million according to the areas of the houses.
He said the government had estimated income of about Rs 127 billion from taxes, showing a jump of 40 per cent against the current fiscal year’s income.
The government has also imposed taxes on entertainment activities, including, 200pc duty on horse racing; 20pc tax on fashion shows and 20pc levy on musical shows while tax on circus has been abolished.
New measures have also been introduced to ensure collection of agriculture income tax, but tax ratio has not been enhanced.
The minister said Rs 20.43 billion allocated to generate power at provincial level from hydal, solar, wind and biogas, showing 50 pc raise as compared to the last year’s allocation of Rs 10 billion for energy sector, which was, later, diverted to other schemes.
The budget of the CM house has also been cut by 30 per cent while other departments’ non-salary expenses have been reduced by 15pc.
Rs 1 billion have been allocated for laptop scheme, Rs 3 billion to extend Ashiyana housing schemes to other cities of Punjab, Rs 3b for Danish schools and Rs 5b allocated for Ramazan package.
The minister announced that Rs 28 billion would be spent on provision of ‘sasta atta’ to the people. He said that patwari system would be replaced by new land record management system by 2014.
Rs 93 billion have been allocated for South Punjab while Rs 10 billion earmarked to upgrade necessary infrastructure of Multan, Pindi and Gujranwala to the level of big cities. Rs7.5 billion have been earmarked for solar tube-wells.