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June 16, 2019

Minister says 80pc of PSDP funds to go into ongoing projects

Business

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June 16, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The government has allocated 80 percent of the total Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) funds for the fiscal year 2019-20 to ensure timely completion of around 295 ongoing projects across the country, a minister said on Saturday.

“Despite financial crunch and hardships, the federal government had allocated Rs951 billion development funds for the upcoming fiscal year,” Khusro Bakhtiar, Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms, said while speaking at a post-budget press conference.

“The focus of the development programme is on less developed areas, building water reservoirs, promoting knowledge economy, and higher education.”

The minister said the government had allocated Rs48 billion for uplift of less or under-developed areas and regions of South Punjab, South Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and rural parts of Sindh, while Rs76 billion have been allocated for the development projects of Balochistan province.

On Karachi, Bakhtiar said despite the economic hub of the county the metropolis had been mostly ignored in terms of development funding in the past, so Rs34 billion would be spent on 41 development projects of the city during the upcoming fiscal year.

He said that the government had also earmarked Rs8 billion development budget for health and education sector projects in Islamabad.

The government had allocated Rs80 billion in the federal PSDP 2019-20 for various power projects to improve the condition of electricity in the country, Bakhtiar said.

He added that the government had enhanced development funding for water sector from 10 percent of total development funding in PSDP 2018-19 to 12 percent for next fiscal and would spend Rs70 billion for water projects, especially big dams including Diamir-Bhasha, Mohmand, and Dasu hydroelectric projects.

He said agriculture sector was also among the priorities of the government, for which development allocations had been enhanced from just Rs1 billion during the ongoing fiscal year to Rs18 billion for the upcoming fiscal year.

In addition, the minister said, keeping in view the climatic change and its impact on the country, the government had allocated Rs9.5 billion for Clean Green Pakistan and tourism development programmes, while for the development of Azad Jammu and Kahshmir, the government had allocated Rs62 billion.

The minister further said an amount of Rs43 billion had been earmarked for Higher Education Commission and Knowledge economy projects, while Rs10 billion had been set aside for Youth Skill Development Initiatives.

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