KARACHI - The Sindh Government on Sunday finalised its budget proposals, deciding a huge allocation of over Rs200 billion for development schemes in next fiscal year 2012-13. 

The overall development outlay would surpass Rs200 billion including provincial ADP, defunct district governments’ development budget as well as schemes to be initiated with financial assistance of foreign donors in next financial year.

A high-level meeting chaired by Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah held on Sunday evening at CM secretariat finalised budget proposals for next financial year, said an official statement.

Though, the official statement have not mentioned any allocation for development as well as overall outlay of budget but sources confirmed that Planning and Development Department suggested Rs175 billion for provincial Annual Development Programme while development schemes which to be initiated by districts and foreign funded schemes are except the provincial budget proposed for next fiscal year.

Keeping financial constraints in view, Finance Department opposed huge allocation of development outlay, suggesting reasonable allocation of less than Rs160 billion for provincial development budget for next year.

Sources confirmed that finance department blamed that planning and development department was lacking of ability to utilise the development budget, besides no transparent system of check and balance to monitor work and quality of material being used in the uplift schemes. 

Sources said that Sindh Chief Minister also expressed anger over the slow process of utilisation of development funds by many departments.

CM also sought report of the departments’ performance as well as which have utilised less funds on development schemes.

The official figures confirmed that out of total provincial development budget of Rs111 billion, the departments utilised only Rs33 billion during nine months from July-March of the current financial year 2011-12. However, the total expenditures reached to 45 per cent of released funds of Rs92 billion during ten months, showing poor performance of the departments.

Meanwhile, the important projects of the next budget will be distribution of government land among the farmers especially for women peasants, distribution of tractors on subsidised rates and construction of houses in flood/rain-hit areas of the Sindh province.

Besides, new educational institutions including women colleges, law colleges/universities as well as upgradation of hospitals are also part of the proposals of next budget.

Sources said that provincial government expected that over Rs25 billion would be collected under GST on services through Sindh Revenue Board in next financial year.

The officials said that overall revenue budget of province will surpass Rs500 billion in fiscal year 2012-13 as it was Rs457 billion in current financial year.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Sindh has claimed that provincial government has planned to give more incentives for common peoples as more funds would be allocated for the development schemes for the welfare of people of Sindh.

CM Sindh directed the finance department to allocate sufficient funds for the maintenance and construction of new roads in areas which affected during rains and floods, besides special funds be earmarked to help people in case of natural disaster in the province.

CM has announced that more and more relief would be given to the people of Sindh in next budget, besides record funds would be allocated for development schemes in next budget.