ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Finance on Thursday unveiled the strategy for the release of funds for the development projects for the financial year 2023-24.
According to the Ministry of Finance’s notification, the Planning, Development and Special Initiatives (PD&SI) Division will release funds for the development budget out of the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) allocation for the current fiscal year 2023-24 for approved projects at 15 percent for quarter 1, 20 percent for quarter 2, 25 percent for quarter 3, and 40 percent for quarter 4.
The notification stated that in pursuance of the provisions of the Public Finance Management Act, 2019, Rule 3(9) of the Cash Management and Treasury Single Account Rules, 2020 and the Financial Management and Powers of Principal Accounting Officers Regulations, 2021, the funds release strategy for Development Budget for the Current Financial Year (CFY) 2023-24 is being issued for implementation with immediate effect and until further orders.
The total PSDP allocation for 2023-24 is Rs950 billion. The 15 percent funds released for Ql, fiscal year 2023-24 (domestic) would be Rs131 billion. Funds released against surrendered amount for SDGs during the fiscal year 2022-23 stand at Rs20.26 billion. Funds released for approved SDGs schemes for 2023-24 is Rs41 billion.
The available funds for remaining PSDP schemes during Q1, fiscal year 2023-24 would be Rs69.74 billion. Funds amounting to Rs11.5 billion are further released in respect of foreign exchange component during Q1, fiscal year 2023-24, the notification stated.
While executing development projects PD&SI Division and the PAOs concerned shall ensure the implementation of the provisions contained under Chapter-III of the Public Finance Management Act, 2019.
The PD&Sl Division shall devise quarterly sector-wise/project-wise/division-wise strategy for the release of funds for the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) within the appropriations approved by the National Assembly and included in the Schedule of Authorized Expenditure in terms of Article 83 of the Constitution of Pakistan.
Any proposal for change to the limits prescribed shall be considered by the Budget Wing, Finance Division on case to case basis and shall require prior approval of the finance secretary.
The release of funds for approved projects in a Demand for Grant and Appropriation shall be made by the PAO in each Quarter within above limits. The PAO shall ensure the availability of sufficient funds for employees related expenses for each project.
PAOs/Heads of the Attached Department/Heads of Sub-ordinate Office or project Director shall not make any Re-appropriation of funds from ERE to Non-ERE heads of account except with the prior concurrence of the Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives.
Adequate budgetary allocations on account of the Foreign Exchange Component (rupee cover) shall be ensured by all relevant PAOs and conveyed to the Economic Affairs Division and the Finance Division.
Funds for foreign exchange payments shall require prior approval of the External Finance Wing of the Finance Division. While examining requests for such funds, the External Finance Wing shall consider the availability of Foreign Exchange.
Section 23 of the Public Finance Management Act, 2019 provides that no authority shall incur or commit any expenditure from the “Federal Consolidated Fund” until the same has been sanctioned by the National Assembly and the expenditure has been provided for the financial year through: a) Schedule of authorized expenditure in terms of Article 83 of the Constitution of Pakistan; b) Supplementary grant or technical supplementary grant as per Article 84 of the constitution duly approved by the Federal Government; or c) Re-appropriation as per section 2 (u) and 11 of the Public Finance Management Act, 2019.
All payments shall be made through the pre-audit system by all the accounting organizations and offices or through assignment account procedure or any other procedure issued by the Finance Division. Separate Assignment Account shall be opened for each Project. No direct payment through the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) shall be made by any office, except with the prior approval of the Finance Secretary as per Rules 3(2) and 3(3) of the Cash Management and Treasury Single Account Rules, 2020.
The provisions of the Public Finance Management Act 2019, the Financial Management and Powers of Principal Accounting Officers Regulations 2021 and instructions issued by the Planning Commission shall be strictly adhered to by all the PAOs and the accounting offices.
The instructions with regard to supplementary grants shall be issued by the Budget Wing, Finance Division, separately. There shall be no requirement of ways and means clearance from the Budget Wing of the Finance Division for the release of the development budget. Quarter-wise budget allocation and release will be uploaded on the MoF and AGPR Servers by the Finance Division, within the above-stated release limits.
No payment shall be made over and above the limits by any accounting organisation/office except with the prior written approval of the Finance Division.
The Development Wing of the Finance Division shall coordinate and oversee the matters relating to the release of funds for the development budget and other ancillary matters. Since the development budget is released to the PD&SI Division, therefore, PAOs may approach the said division for any issues related to authorisation as well as distribution of funds between the approved projects/schemes.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2023