LAHORE: Punjab Minister for Finance Awais Laghari on Wednesday unveiled Punjab Budget 2022-23 in a session of the provincial assembly held at the Aiwan-e-Iqbal after Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi halted the budget session amid deadlock.
The provincial finance minister unveiled the Rs3.226 trillion provincial budget for the fiscal year 2022-23 and termed it a “pro-poor and pro-development budget”.
In its first annual budget, the present government allocated a hefty amount of Rs 685 billion under the Annual Development Programme (ADP), with special focus on pro-poor initiatives and controlling inflation. No new tax has been imposed in the budget. Moreover, Rs683.5bn has been allocated for development schemes, Rs56 billion for the education sector, Rs173 billion for the health sector and 11.95bn will be given to the ‘Saaf Pani’ project. The annual development budget of South Punjab has been proposed at Rs240 billion, Awais Leghari said in his budget speech.
Giving break-up of the budget in his budget speech, the minister said that Punjab estimated its total revenue collection at Rs 2,521.29 billion, under which Punjab would receive Rs 2020.74 billion from Federal divisible pool, while provincial receipts (own resource revenue) are estimated at Rs 500.53 billion for FY 2022-23, 24 per cent higher than Rs 405 billion of FY 2021-22.
Out of own resource revenue, Leghari said that Punjab Revenue Authority s (PRA s) collection target had been set at Rs 190 billion with 22 per cent increase, board of Revenue (BoR) collection at Rs 95 billion, with 44 per cent raise and Excise and Taxation Department s collection at Rs 43.5 billion with two per cent increase. While, 24 per cent hike is estimated under the head of non-tax revenue, having target of Rs 163.53 billion for the next fiscal year starting from July 1, 2022, he added.
Awais Leghari said that Rs435.87 billion have been earmarked for payment of salaries while Rs312 billion have been allocated for pension. He said 40% of the development budget will be spent on social sector and 24% on infrastructure. Rs35 billion has been allocated for construction and repair of roads in Punjab, while minimum wage is proposed to increase from Rs20,000 to Rs25,000. As per budget 2022-2023, the employees will get 15 percent increase in basic pay and 15 percent disparity allowance. Rs435.87 billion has been allocated for salaries while the pensioners will get a 15% hike as the pension bill has been put at Rs312 billion. However, the disparity allowance will be limited to selected departments of the provincial government.
Punjab government has allocated Rs6.2 billion for governance and IT, Rs500 million for labour and HR development, Rs6.3 billion for transport and Rs1.8 billion for emergency service (1122), according to official documents.