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October 12, 2017



Ministry releases Rs147.294 billion for 291 development projects in Q1

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Planning has released Rs147.294 billion for 291 development projects during the first three months of the current fiscal year, after abolishing the condition of ways and means for the first quarter in the current fiscal.

However, Finance Ministry’s data showed that the utilisation under Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) stood at Rs84 billion in the first quarter of the current fiscal year 2017-18 against released amount of Rs147.2 billion.

Almost 74 percent of the estimated outlay for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is for energy sector. Besides, import of LNG/natural gas and respective inland pipeline infrastructure, kick-starting of 3,600MW LNG projects, 2,150MW Dassu, 4,500MW Diamer Basha and 969MW Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower project are major initiatives of the government to alleviate energy problems.

The Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform held a review about releases made against various PSDP programmes/projects. The ministry released Rs37 billion more PSDP funds in the first quarter of 2017 as compared to the corresponding period of the previous fiscal year.

According to the report, higher releases have been made in transport and communication, water, social welfare, culture, higher education, SDGs, special areas, food and agriculture, industries, minerals, and ERRA.

The minister for planning, development and reform has directed the ministry officials to ensure the availability of sufficient funds to fast-track completion of the PSDP projects during the current fiscal year. The minister further said focus should be maintained on priority areas of the public interest.

The government had allocated an amount of Rs2,513 billion inclusive of federal and provincial PSDP allocations for the fiscal year 2017-18 which is 25 percent higher than the fiscal year 2016-17.

Whereas, for FY17, the National Development Outlay was set at Rs1,675 billion, which included Federal PSDP of Rs800 billion, and provincial ADPs of Rs875 billion. An amount of Rs147,294 million has been released in the first quarter for 291 projects. The total utilisation of PSDP funding at federal level stood at Rs733 billion in the last fiscal year.

The government set the target of raising the road-density to a level of 0.45 kilometre per square km by 2018, which will increase the existing national road network from about 260,000km to 358,000km.

For this, the PSDP initiated 92 projects in 2016-17, releasing an amount of Rs30,117.5 million whereas during the current fiscal year, an amount of Rs58,624.7 million has been dispensed for its 55 projects.

There were 21 projects in the water sector during FY17, with an allocation of Rs3,310.3 million, while 10 water projects have so far been released an amount of 7,868.8 million in the first quarter of FY18.

Since the incumbent government focuses on education and health sectors, it has been working on opening a university campus in each district of Pakistan. During the first quarter of FY17, the government released Rs4,439.4 million to the sectors, whereas the amount disbursed in FY18 went up to Rs6,508.7 million.

The government released Rs1,374.2 million for 16 education and training programs. An amount of Rs4,327.9 million was released for FY17 for the government’s 23 health projects, while 17 projects of year 2017-18 have been provided with Rs1,998 million so far.

The government is mainstreaming youth through education, skill development, entrepreneurship, training, employment, engagement, empowerment, sports and recreational facilities and has released an amount of Rs11.5 million. The government released Rs31.6 million for three environment projects in for the year 2016-17, while it allocated Rs199 for seven projects in the current year for the said sector.

Pakistan Vision 2025 recognises democratic governance, institutional reform and modernisation of public sector as one of the seven pillars of development and growth framework. Its major focus is strengthening institutions, fostering markets and initiating reforms in the areas of performance evaluation, service delivery, civil service, judicial systems and procedures, tax administration, procurement, financial management, police,  e-governance, open government, enforcing property rights, and public sector enterprises. Under these plans, 23 projects are being pursued in FY18 that have been released an amount of Rs660.8 million.

Food and Agriculture Department worked upon 27 projects in FY17 that were released Rs301.8 million; while 21 projects of FY18 have been released Rs386.4 million.

Industry sector had seven projects in the previous financial year with the released amount of Rs123.6 million, those projects have received Rs271.6 million so far in the first quarter of the current fiscal year.