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coronavirus
Coronavirus
VERY HIGH
Source: covid.gov.pk
Pakistan Deaths
29,097
2024hr
Pakistan Cases
1,367,605
7,58624hr
Sindh
523,774
Punjab
462,323
Balochistan
33,910
Islamabad
117,436
KPK
184,455

KARACHI: The government of Sindh, in its budget for the fiscal year 2020-21, has proposed Rs 10 billion for cash transfers to individuals affected by Covid-19 under the social protection pro-poor & sustainable development measures.

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 31 billion is proposed for the next financial year 2021-22 by the Sindh government.

Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah in his budget speech said that Sindh government as focused five economic giants i.e. Want, Disease, Ignorance, Squalor and Idleness and this budget in specific and the policies of the Government of Sindh are essentially focused on combating these five issues.

According to Budget documents, the amount of Rs 10 billion will be disbursed among individuals affected by Covid-19 under Sindh Peoples Support Program through Social Protection Strategic Unit, Social Welfare department.

Some Rs 3.0 billion has been allocated for a Soft Loan Program for Small & Medium Enterprises. Loan size will range from Rs 0.5 million to a maximum of Rs 2.0 million. An allocation of Rs 3.0 billion is proposed under Poverty Alleviation Program for small farmers/community based loans in rural areas. Loan size of Rs 25,000 using poverty reduction score cards of ongoing poverty reduction program through Social Protection Strategist Unit, Social Welfare department.

Sindh Government has earmarked Rs 2 billion for Low Cost Housing through Benazir Housing Cell catering needs of the poor who either do not have their own houses or their houses are in dilapidated condition posing risk to their life and property.

In addition, Rs 2 billion is being earmarked for a Small Business Support Fund in urban areas through Social Protection Strategist Unit, Social Welfare department. Loan size will be a maximum of Rs 0.2 million. One billion rupee is kept for Supporting Technology-based startups, incubators and accelerators through Investment Department.

An amount of Rs 2 billion is allocated for Registration, Enrolment and Annual Examination Fee of Classes (IX to XII) in next financial year and Rs 1.2 billion is earmarked for Scholarship to Position Holders for Grades in SSC & HSSC in Educational Boards of Sindh.

Some Rs 500 million is proposed for Livestock breeding. Concerned department will be Livestock & Fisheries Department and Rs 500 million is allocated for Financing Livestock & Fisheries Enterprise Development.

An amount of Rs 700 million is kept for Support of I.T interventions & Innovations Solutions in Goods and Accelerators through Investment department in consultation with I.T Department. A Special Children Fund of Rs 500 million is earmarked for providing every family with Special Children up-to Rs.0.100 million through Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities.

In addition, Rs 500 million is proposed for Revamping and Establishment of Orphanage through Social Welfare Department and Rs 500 million is also kept for Old age home at Districts level through Social Welfare Department.

Sindh has also initiated poverty reduction program from two districts and expanded to 12 districts. Through this program government has reached out to 1 million women households. Success of Peoples' Poverty Reduction Program attracted European Union to join provincial government's initiative through "Sindh Union Council and Community Economic Strengthening Program" (SUCCESS) in additional 8 districts.

Under next generation reforms, poverty reduction strategy has been developed which focuses on Community Driven Local Development (CDLD), rural and urban services hub through cluster approach and enterprise development. This approach is being implemented in district Sujawal as pilot.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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