ISLAMABAD - Despite severe financial constraints, the government released handsome amount of almost Rs 150 billion for the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) during the first nine and half months (July-April 20) of the current financial year 2011-2012.

“It is after a long time that government did not slash the PSDP in the ongoing fiscal year and it is all set to meet the target of releasing funds for PSDP well on time”, said an official of the Planning Commission of Pakistan while talking to The Nation on Saturday. He further said that government had still no intention to slash the PSDP to overcome the ballooning fiscal deficit that is already on the higher side.

He said that Planning Commission had released 65 per cent in first nine and half months of the outgoing financial year against overall allocation of the Rs 228 billion.

The government had planned to spend Rs 300 billion on PSDP including Rs 10 billion for Earthquake Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Authority (ERRA) in the current fiscal year wherein Planning Commission would release Rs 228 billion, foreign aid component is Rs38.65 billion allocated for the current year was directly spent by the executing agencies against the releases made by foreign agencies while Rs33 billion worth of special programmes were separately dealt with by the Cabinet Division.

The Planning Commission official further said that the government would increase the PSDP funds to Rs 350 billion in the budget for the upcoming fiscal year 2012-2013.

Meanwhile, according to the break-up of Rs 148.9 billion released during the first nine and half months of the ongoing financial year 2011-2012, the government has released Rs 79.2 billion for the infrastructure against the overall allocation of Rs 158.4 billion. Meanwhile, the government has released Rs 65.3 billion for social sector against the overall allocation of Rs 128.7 billion and Rs 1.3 billion has been released for other sectors against the total allocation of Rs 3.3 billion for the whole financial year.

Meanwhile, the government released Rs 3.2 billion for the Earthquake Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Authority (ERRA) against the overall allocation of Rs 10 billion.