QUETTA: Balochistan’s budget for fiscal year 2017-18 is scheduled to be presented today (Thursday) with an estimated total outlay of Rs320 billion. The Balochistan four parties coalition government’s last budget is estimated to show a deficit of over Rs40 billion.

The volume of overall development budget is anticipated at Rs80 billion, however, the largest part of 2017-18 budget (Rs240 billion) will be allocated for non-development financial plan.

As per sources of Finance Department, Chief Minister’s Adviser for Finance Sardar Aslam Bizenjo will unveil the budget in Balochistan Assembly session. The budget session has been convened on 4 pm at the Balochistan Assembly building.

The sources said it has been suggested that Rs38 billion should for earmarked for law and order situation, Rs 40 billion for education, Rs37 billion for health and Rs76 billion for Chief Minister’s Divisional Development Programme.

The sources said that 6000 new vacancies are likely to be advertised in the new fiscal year’s budget.

Proposals to increase 10 per cent salaries and pensions of the government employees have been added. The government has also suggested to grant 5000 minimum remuneration for labourers. Potable water and construction of roads projects are expected to be prioritised in 2017-18 fiscal year budget.

It is pertinent to mention that Rs240 billion are said to be allocated for non-development expenditure, mostly salaries, despite the National Database and Registration Authority’s recent revelation that 28,367 government employees have invalid documents.

Meanwhile, Adviser to CM on Finance Sardar Aslam Bizenjo, in a meeting with a delegation comprising all district chairmen of the province, said that funds in bulk had been allocated for the local governments in the budget aiming at solving people’s problems at grass root level. The Balochistan district chairmen of local government institutes staged a sit-in in front of Chief Minister’s House last day and demanded powers and substantial funds for the institutes.

Bizenjo assured the delegation that the coalition government believed in strong institutes of the local government and well-aware of the challenges they were encountering.