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Budget 2012-13
- Friday, May 18, 2012 - From Print Edition


ISLAMABAD: The government has proposed a 500 percent increase in public sector employees’ house rent in the new proposed monetization of housing scheme, it is learnt. The increase, proposed in the next budget, will have a whopping annual financial impact of Rs165.961 billion.


According to a working paper prepared by a high-powered committee under the chairmanship of Deputy Chairman Planning Commission (DCPC) Dr. Nadeem Ul Haq, the government has worked out five to eight different options at the annual cost of up to Rs165 billion provided the presently occupied houses are vacated and the premises can be put to commercial use, including constructing commercial high-rise buildings in major cities.


The working paper illustrates five basic options according to which the public sector staff in grade 1 to 6 will get 525 percent increase in cash amount compared to existing house rent allowance while in grade 7 to 22 the increase will be standing in the range of 500 percent.


“In case of moving ahead with monetization of housing, the precious land vacated in the federal capital alone, if sold to potential investors, could raise up to $60 billion, the equivalent of country’s total foreign debt”, a committee member of monetization scheme on housing told The News in background discussions.


In case of approval of monetization scheme, an Islamabad-based federal secretary will get Rs202,560 per month in lieu of vacating the official residence. However, the officer of grade 22 working in other cities will get Rs183,600 per month and in case of living in small cities he or she will get Rs161,053 per month.


The existing house rent for grade 22 officers in Islamabad is Rs33,760, in medium seized cities Rs30,600 and in small cities Rs26842 per month. For grade 21 officer, the increased amount of monetization will be jacked up to Rs169,260 per month in Islamabad, Rs143,310 in other cities and Rs128,342 in small cities. For grade 20 officers, the cash amount of house rent ceiling will be increased to Rs141,360 in Islamabad, Rs121,560 in other cities and Rs106,632 in small cities. For grade 19 officers, the monetized amount of housing will be standing at Rs112,560 in Islamabad, Rs96,330 in other cities and Rs84,500 in small cities.


With increase of 500 percent in house rent allowance, the government will provide Rs15063 per month to employees working in grade 1 and 2 in Islamabad, Rs14125 in other cities and Rs12390 in small cities while in grade 3 to 6 the working staff will get Rs 23531 in Islamabad, Rs20688 in other cities and Rs18147 in small cities.


For grade 7 to 10, in case of monetization, the maxium proposed amount will be Rs33,750 in Islamabad, Rs30210 in other cities and Rs26500 in small cities. In case of grade 11 to 14, the monetization scheme will jack up monthly cash amount up to Rs50,910 in Islamabad, Rs44160 in other cities and Rs38737 in small cities.


For grade 15 and 16, the proposed monetization amount will be Rs63,960 for Islamabad, Rs55830 for other cities and Rs48974 in small cities.


For officer rank of grade 17 and 18, the proposed monetization amount will be standing at Rs84660 for Islamabad from existing house rent range of Rs14110 per month while in other cities the jacked up amount proposed at Rs73860 per month from existing range of Rs12310 per month. In small cities the increased amount would be Rs64789 per month.


When close aide of DCPC Dr. Nadeem Ul Haq was inquired about bow the massive amount of Rs165 billion would be raised for the implementation of the proposed scheme, he said that multilateral donors would be keen to provide funding for this initiative.s