CM Murad unveils Rs1.241 trillion deficit budget for FY 2020-21 amid protest

Sindh Budget 2020-21

KARACHI, Jun 17 (APP):Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah Wednesday presented Rs1.241 trillion budget for the next financial year 2020-21 with a budget deficit of Rs 18.38 billion sans introducing any new tax amid noisy protest by opposition at Sindh Assembly.
The Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah who also holds the portfolio of the Sindh Finance Minister continued his budget speech despite the opposition’s protest on the floor of the house.
The budget session, earlier, commenced with recitation of the verses from Holy Quran and Naat Sharif with Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani in the chair.
While presenting the budget, the Chief Minister said that the Government of Pakistan has set Federal Board of Revenue a target of Rs.4.9 trillion for the next financial year 2020-21.
Sindh has been conveyed its anticipated Federal Transfers under NFC share distribution formula.
The total receivables from the federal government for the financial year 2019-20 stand at Rs.760.3 billion,
wherein Rs.679.7 billion is share from divisible pool, Rs.62.3 billion as straight transfers and Rs.18.3 billion in
respect of grants to offset losses on abolition of OZT.
He said that it is estimated that total provincial receipts for the Financial Year 2020-21
will be Rs.313.3 billion, approximately 09% higher than the Budget Estimates for the financial year 2019-20.
In order to achieve the provincial target in receipts, the Revenue Collecting Agencies are being strengthened
with increased emphasize on automation. Moreover, monitoring mechanisms will also be developed to monitor
provincial receipts.
Muradd Ali Shah said that the total outlay of budget for the next financial year 2020-21 is Rs.1.241 trillion. The total size of Current Revenue Expenditure is Rs.968.9 billion. It is important to highlight here that for the next financial year, we have tried to align our Development as well as non-development expenditure priorities in line with the post COVID-19 situation.
He said that the Government of Sindh budgeted Rs.284.0 billion as total development outlay in financial
year 2019-20, wherein Rs.208.0 billion were earmarked for Provincial ADP, Rs.20.0 billion for District ADP, Rs.51.0 billion in foreign projects assistance, and Rs.4.9 billion from Federal PSDP grant.
Looking at the financial constraints, stakeholder departments are likely to complete 425 schemes during 2019-20,
33 schemes less as compared to 458 completed in 2018-19.
For the next financial year 2020-21, the Administrative Departments in Sindh were earlier advised to prepare
proposals for Provincial ADP 2020-21 at the size same as that of 2019-20 while allocating 85% for on-going schemes and 15% new schemes.
However, in a post COVID-19 scenario, with a reduction in federal transfers and funding for development, the
total development outlay for Sindh for the next financial year 2020-21 is proposed at Rs.232.9 billion, allocating
Rs.155.0 billion to Provincial ADP and Rs.15.0 billion to District ADP schemes.
It would be pertinent to highlight that in this context Rs.54.6 billion are expected from Foreign Projects
Assistance (FPA) and Rs.8.3 billion from Federal Government in Federal PSDP for 10 schemes under execution
by Government of Sindh.
The government had earlier decided to keep the size of development budget for the next financial year 2020-21
for important sectors such as Education, Health, Social Safety & Poverty Reduction and Water & Sanitation nearly same as that of 2019-20.
In exceptional cases such as Health, allocation has been increased from Rs.13.50 billion to Rs.23.50 billion in
order to meet the challenges of COVID-19 situation.
The throw-forward amount in Provincial ADP 2020-21 for 2209 schemes has reached at Rs.564.00 billion as compared to Rs.606.0 billion for 2705 schemes in 2019-20.
Keeping in view above non-development and development expenditure priorities, the major milestone of our objectives are exercise maximum austerity measures in our nondevelopment expenditures, provide maximum resources for Health sector, enlarge substantially our social protection net through increased cash transfers to poverty inflicted people, provide ways and means for employment generation as well sustaining economic activity for the poorest of the poor, in rural as well as urban areas, continuing our focus on education, through increased allocations in financial year on development and nondevelopment, despite huge resource constraints and fashion our development spending in sync with the above mentioned post Covid preferences.
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said, ‘We have gone through a long and tiring journey, facing
and combating the challenges posed by COVID-19, the epidemic that spread across international borders and eventually escalated into a global pandemic spreading to the entire world like wildfire.
It also affected Pakistan and we now see its extended impact on our social and economic domains. In the
wake of the disastrous effects of COVID-19, Sindh Government initiatives and resources had to be redirected to save precious lives and a potentially decelerating economy.
He said that COVID-19 was primarily a threat to existing health systems, and subsequently extended its impact to all facets of life, as it grew in size and reach, at a massive scale.
The world had to divert its resources to save people from this invisible enemy. It brought life to a grinding
halt and converted cities into virtual ghost towns as lockdown, considered to be the only working strategy to face
the threat, was imposed almost all over the world.
It was aimed at minimizing people-to-people physical contact, breaking the human chain of dominoes,
and thus coined the new term “Social Distancing”, he said.
He said that Government of Sindh followed the universally adopted approach to address the threat
posed by COVID-19.
Sindh was the first province to take steps for enforcing and implementing a lockdown, he said, adding that
steps were taken as soon as the first case surfaced on 26th February 2020, and schools were immediately closed to protect our children.
‘We moved towards closing down all places where people could gather and a lockdown was imposed on 23rd March 2020 and continues to remain in force in certain domains. Other provinces followed suit and gradually, the rest of the country also imposed a lockdown,’ the chief minister said.
Murad Ali Shah said that the Government of Sindh did not rely on a lockdown alone. ‘We diverted our
resources towards providing better health facilities, and towards supporting the common man facing a
potential meltdown, as economy came to a near standstill as a result of an imminent national lockdown.
He said that the Sindh government created a Coronavirus Emergency Fund (CEF) with initial outlay
at Rs.3.0 billion, initially with Rs.1.3 billion contributions from Government of Sindh and around Rs1.7 billion
from employees of Government of Sindh.
Provisioning of moneys is monitored and approved by a Committee headed by the Chief Secretary, Sindh.
The committee has strong representation from private sector for ensuring transparency as well as neutrality
in the processes.
He said that Health Risk allowance @ One Running Basic salary in relevant Pay Scale has been
allowed initially to the Health Personnel who are performing duties related to COVID-19 patients in
the health institutions/ laboratories. Allowance is being extended to all health professionals.
Post Graduate/House Job Officers will also be paid initial basic pay of BPS-18/17 respectively with
effect from March 2020 till subsiding of COVID-19 pandemic.
It is estimated that around Rs.1.0 billion will be spent as Health Risk Allowance in the next financial year 2020-21.
Corona testing capacity has been enhanced to 11,450 per day in the province, which was initially only
80 tests per day.
He said that in order to ensure that this marginalized segment of our society is looked after with dignity, Government of Sindh released over Rs.1.08 Billion to all Deputy Commissioners of the province for ensuring that rations reach the needy at their doorsteps.
Murad Ali Shah said, ‘ We must appreciate the efforts of healthcare personnel including doctors, nurses,
paramedics, and technicians who provided care to COVID-19 patients by placing their lives at stake as our first line of defense. Our healthcare professionals proved that they are defenders of health of the nation.
We must also acknowledge the service provided by our Law Enforcement Agencies, the Police, Rangers and the Armed Forces, who put their health and life at risk to enforce government policies. Acknowledgement is also
due to our revenue official and other government officials. The press and media should also be mentioned for keeping the people informed in these difficult times. I would also like to acknowledge the assistance provided to us by the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the Agha Khan University Hospital, SIUT and Indus Hospital.
He said, ‘I would also like to appreciate the cooperation received from the federal government in
connection with the threat of COVID-19. He said, ‘We have an agrarian economy. Agriculture plays a pivotal role
in the country’s economy. It contributes 24% to the GDP. Sindh’s contribution to national production is 36% in rice, 29% in sugarcane, 34% in cotton and 15% in wheat. We are determined to increase agricultural output to make the farmers and the province prosperous.
Unfortunately, we are facing the imminent threat of food insecurity, as a direct result of Locusts,
which not only threaten our crops, but also put our economy at stake. Our farmer friendly government is making untiring efforts to address this threat and save our crops.
Government of Sindh declared a locust emergency in December 2019 in light of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Desert Locust Watch warnings which predicted severe locust threat for Pakistan. We took a number of steps to counter the threat.
Agriculture Department is coordinating with Pak Army, National Disaster Management Authority, Pakistan Rangers, Department of Plant Protection, Government of Pakistan, Provincial Disaster Management Authority and district administrations.
The World Bank has also approached us for helping in addressing the threat from locust. The Government of
China has also come in to help and has provided 12 Air-blast Sprayers for mounting on vehicles.
He said that the revised estimates in financial year 2019-20, the Federal Government set target
of collections at Rs. 5.55 trillion for Federal Board of Revenue (FBR). According to the share distribution formula,
Government of Sindh was to receive a total of Rs.835.3 billion, consisting of Rs.761.0 billion under divisible
pool, Rs.53.9 billion in straight transfers and Rs.20.5 billion as grants to offset losses of abolished OZT.
In reality, the federal government conveyed year end Revised Estimates at a total of Rs.606.7 billion,
with Rs.534.9 billion from divisible pool, Rs.57.3 billion in straight transfers and Rs.14.3 billion on account of OZT.
Hence the total Revised Estimates for federal transfers fell 27% short by an amount of Rs.228.6 billion for
the current financial year 2019-20.
Standing in the twelfth month in the current financial year we have received a total of Rs.525.1 billion, with
Rs.471.0 billion in divisible pool, Rs.41.5 billion as straight transfers and Rs.12.7 billion as OZT share.
Thus, in terms of actuals, we received 31% short that is Rs.240.6 billion short of the budget estimates.
The total provincial receipts for the financial year 2019-20 was fixed at Rs.288.7 billion. The COVID-19
situation deeply affected the provincial receipts. The actual collection is expected to be Rs.210.0 billion which
is only 8% higher than the last year’s actual collections Rs.194.9 billion, he said.
Murad Ali Shah said that for ensuring food security and reduced inflation and unemployment, a strategy to encourage community driven economic activities, focusing on supporting home-based businesses, small and medium enterprises, a social protection and economic sustainability package of Rs.34.2 billion is proposed for the next financial year 2020-21.
He said that the Health continues to remain the third largest sector with allocation for Current Revenue
Expenditure of Rs.120 billion and Development, including Foreign Project Assistance at Rs.15.5 billion in financial
year 2019-20.
In next financial year 2020-21 total Current Revenue Expenditure is budgeted at Rs.139.1 billion while
allocation for development schemes is Rs.23.5 billion.
He said that the budget of Health Department is divided into two major segments i.e. Health Services and
Medical Education. The budget estimates for Health Department for financial year 2019-20 was Rs.120.486 billion which has been increased to Rs.139.178 billion for the next financial year 2020-21.
Rs.7.0 billion has been allocated in next financial year 2020-21 for 09 vertical Programs to combat/control Polio,
TB, Aids, Lady Health Worker Programme, Hepatitis control, expanded program for Immunization and others.
These Programs have also been shifted from development to regular budget in next financial year 2020-21. Main features include Rs.559.4 million for TB Control Program in Sindh, Rs.5.5 billion are allocated for a multi-sectoral Accelerated Action Plan for reduction of stunting & malnutrition in various departments including health. Rs.1.2 billion for Lady Health Worker (LHW) Program, Rs.1.9 billion for Prevention & Control of Hepatitis in Sindh,Rs.267.9 million for Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health Program in Sindh, Rs.2.3 billion for EPI Program Sindh, Rs1.0 billion for 200 Bedded Infectious Disease Control Hospital at NIPA, Karachi, Rs.1.0 billion, Rs.1.0 billion for upgradation and operationalization of newly completed 22 Health facilities, Rs.234.6 million for upgradation of Health care services for Lyari General Hospital Karachi and Rs.521.1 million for taken over health facilities of Proscribed organizations in Sindh.
The Chief Minister said that education continues to be one of the key priority areas for Government of Sindh.
‘We aim at improving access to equitable, inclusive and quality education for all to realize their fullest potential and contribute to the development of society and economy, thus creating sense of nationhood, inculcating values of tolerance, social justice and democracy.
For the next financial year 2020-21, the budget of Education sector, in a macro perspective, has been increased to Rs.244.5 billion, compared with Rs.212.4 billion for financial year 2019-20.
In ADP for the next financial year 2020-21, Education sector has been allocated a total development
budget of Rs.21.1 billion for 397 on-going and 11 new, but un-approved schemes.
An allocation of Rs.3.1 billion is provided under Foreign Projects Assistance (FPA) in addition
to the provincial development budget resource allocation.
School Education & Literacy Department has been allocated Rs.13.2 billion for 265 on-going schemes and 4 new schemes.
For College Education Department, an allocation of Rs.3.71 billion has been proposed in ADP 2020-21 for 67
on-going and 2 new schemes.
Allocation for development priorities of Universities & Boards is Rs.3.3 billion for providing funds for public
sector universities for strengthening their educational infrastructure and for constructing new educational facilities.
He said that for the next financial year 2020-21 Rs.14.8 billion is kept in the budget for Works & Services department.
He further said that the Irrigation sector will be allocated development budget of Rs.20.1 billion in
ADP 2020-21 for 198 on-going and 18 new un-approved schemes.
Murad Ali Shah continuing his budget speech said that Saaf Suthro Sindh (SSS) Program has been conceived as
an additional component of the Sindh Inter-Sectoral Nutrition Support Program (NSP). The common objective of both programs is to improve the nutritional status of Sindh particularly rural communities, through sanitation interventions.
This program aims to achieve an Open Defecation Free (ODF) Sindh by 2025.
Saaf Suthro Sindh is being implemented with the assistance of World Bank in 13 districts of Sindh. Project
will cover 50 percent of the rural population in each district, or about 2 million people. At least
half of the beneficiaries under Saaf Suthro Sindh (SSS) will be women.
The Government of Sindh has initiated Competitive and Liveable City of Karachi (CLICK) project with
assistance of the World Bank. Its total cost is Rs.33.600 billion. It is aimed at improving infrastructure in Karachi
and capacity building of all the councils of metropolitan City. The project will be completed by 2025.
Karachi Water & Sewerage Services Improvement Project (KWSSIF) is project for infrastructure development of
the age-old facilities of Water & Sewerage Services in Karachi.
The total investment committed for the project is 1.6 billion US dollars over a span of 12 years. During
this period the entire infrastructure needs of Karachi will be met through World Bank, AIIB and Government of Sindh investment at the ratio of 40:40:20.
The Government of Sindh is taking lead in strengthening of Social Welfare Department and its allied facilities
to mitigate the suffering of poor in prevailing circumstances due to COVID-19.
The budget allocation of social welfare department has been enhanced from Rs.1.8 billion to 27.1 billion in
the next financial year 2020-21.
He said that the new legislation is in process on Sindh Dowry Bill 2017, Sindh Acid Control and Adoption of
Protection against Harassment of Women at the Workplace Act at provincial level.
In the next financial year 2020-21 total 10 on-going & new schemes have been included with an allocation of
Rs.206.250 million and also one new scheme namely” Providing of scooty for working women in Sindh” with an
estimated cost of Rs.90.00 million proposed to be included in ADP 2020-21.
He said that Minorities are integral part of the population of Pakistan including the province of Sindh.
They have the freedom to live life in accordance with their respective religion and customs.
The Government of Sindh has been taking steps time by time for welfare and prosperity of the minorities so that
they may play their role in the development and progress of the province of Sindh.
Rs.855.6 million was allocated for the financial year 2019-20. For the next financial year Rs.1.5 billion is kept
in the budget.
With Public Private Partnership interventions private sector and nongovernmental organizations have been involved in public sector reforms in public financial management, Health, Works & Services and Education Departments which has improved
governance, access and quality of service delivery.
It is pertinent to mention here that mega projects like Malir Expressway, Waste Water Treatment Plant at TP-1, Urban Road Initiatives in Karachi, Dhabeji Special Economic Zone and Technology Park at NED University will generate significant
investment opportunities for the province, notwithstanding secondary positive impacts such as job creation, increase in tax revenues and improved quality of life for the people of Sindh.
Considering the economic implications arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, Public Private Partnerships offers the only sustainable solution to offset the fiscal constraints and resource scarcity as many more projects in PPPs shall ensure transparency, efficiency, innovation, private capital mobilization, improved service delivery and creation of a system of deferred payments against upfront infrastructure development.
So far the PPP Project Portfolio has been more than Rs.75.0 billion and going forward Insha Allah in next two
years we intend to develop projects under PPP worth Rs.120.0 billion which is a great support in addition
to ADP allocation, he concluded.