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NEC to meet for approving macroeconomic targets, outlay of Rs1.91 tr

ISLAMABAD: The National Economic Council (NEC) is scheduled to meet on next Monday (June 7), chaired by the prime minister, to approve macroeconomic targets and the national development outlay of Rs1.91 trillion for the next fiscal budget.

The NEC will meet next week for considering approval of macroeconomic targets of the real GDP growth of 4.8 percent and inflation at 8.2 percent. The Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) will be standing at Rs900 billion, while the provinces’ annual development plan will also envisage allocation of over Rs1 trillion. The Punjab’s proposed annual development outlay is Rs500 billion, Sindh’s Rs320 billion, KP Rs219 billion and Balochistan’s Rs190 billion. The NEC will also grant formal approval to the GDP growth rate around 4.8 percent to 5 percent of the GDP for upcoming budget and inflation at 8.2 percent.

There is another emerging challenge for the economy as the import bill is projected to go up to $55 billion in the next fiscal year because of rising commodity and fuel prices. So, the current account deficit, which is in surplus, will be converted into deficit from the next budget. The export target will be fixed at over $26 billion and remittances at over $31 billion. The federal government will also launch Special Regional Equalisation Programme with an allocation of Rs133 billion for the upcoming budget, including Rs54 billion for merged districts of FATA in KP, Rs45 billion for special areas in AJK and GB and Rs34 billion for less developed areas (North and South Balochistan Packages, Sindh Development Plan and GB Plan).

The size of PSDP for the fiscal year of 2021-22 is Rs900 billion, including foreign aid of Rs101 billion. The government has allocated Rs103.5 billion for energy sector, Rs99.4 billion for water sector, Rs265.3 billion for transport and communication, including the Viability Gap Fund (VGF) and Rs40.4 billion for physical planning and housing sector in the next PSDP.