QUETTA: Balochistan Finance Minister Mir Zahoor Ahmed Buledi has said that regardless of facing a revenue shortfall, the Baluchistan government has presented a “tax-free” budget for the next financial year 2019-20 and no area has been unnoticed regarding development projects, including constituencies of opposition parties.
Addressing at a post-budget press conference along with Finance Secretary Noor-ul-Haq Baloch and Additional Chief Secretary for Planning and Development Abdul Rehman Buzdar on Thursday, Mr Buledi said the Balochistan government would practice its plans for growing revenues to cover the difference of Rs47.70 billion between expenditures and revenue receipts.
He said the government would also shrink its non-development expenditures and invest in sectors which would produce maximum revenue for the province. The finance secretary said the government had proposed no new tax in the finance bill, but would make some changes in the existing rates of some taxes to increase the revenue of the provincial government.
Mr Baloch said that in the current PSPD of Rs88 billion, the deficit was Rs60.1 billion and the government had only Rs17-18 billion for development programmes.
He said, by taking special steps the government would provide around Rs43 billion for development schemes.
The next financial year’s budget is estimated to be of Rs419 billion with a deficit of Rs47.7 billion.
He said that opposition members without even studying the PSDP and other documents, started protesting in the assembly during the budget speech.
Mr Buledi said, ‘‘ I am confident that after reading the budget copies, they would feel sorry about what they did during the budget session, because opposing this budget is tantamount to opposing the development and infrastructure of entire Baluchistan”.