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ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly on Monday approved charged expenditure worth Rs27.886 trillion included in Demands for Grants and Appropriations related to different services, purposes and departments for the financial year ending on June 30, 2023 after debate in the house.

The National Assumedly approved Rs10 million for Pakistan Post, Rs3.458 billion for superannuation allowances and pensions, Rs22 billion for grants, subsidies and miscellaneous expenditure, Rs50 million for foreign missions, Rs310.2 million for law and justice division, Rs2.707 billion for National Assembly, Rs2.348 billion for Senate, Rs296.876 billion for external development loans and advance by federal government, Rs411 million for household and allowances of the President (public) and Rs645 million for staff, household and allowances of the President (personal).

The house also approved Rs510.971 billion for servicing of foreign debt, Rs3.792 trillion for foreign loans repayment, Rs142.771 billion for repayment of short-term foreign credits, Rs6.095 billion for audit, Rs3.439 trillion for servicing of domestic debt, Rs19.654 trillion for repayment of domestic debt, Rs3.091 billion for Supreme Court, Rs1.122 billion for Islamabad High Court, Rs6.289 billion for Election Commission of Pakistan, Rs100 million for Federal Ombudsman Secretariat for Protection against Harassment of Women at work place, Rs943 million for Wafaqi Mohtasib and Rs306 million for the Federal Tax Ombudsman.

While discussing the charged expenditure included in demands for grants and appropriations, Maulana Abdul Akbar Chitrali of Jamaat-e-Islami said that there is a need to increase the budgetary allocation and authority of ECP, and asked to avoid unnecessary spending on other heads.

Syed Hussain Tariq of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Osama Qadri of Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQMP) and others called upon the government to adopt more austerity measures to reduce expenses.

Winding up the discussion on Charged Expenditures, the state minister for finance and revenue Dr Ayisha Ghous Pasha said that around 98 percent of the charged expenses are related to debt and debt servicing.

She said that the government was introducing structural reforms in the country’s finance and revenue system to reduce the budget deficit.

She said that the key structural reforms included measures to increase tax revenues, reduce current expenditures, compress imports, and boost exports of the country.

She said that it is a focus of the government to control the budget deficit. She said that debt servicing was also a priority of the government and “we are looking to it.”

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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