ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s newly elected government has been tackling its first major challenge in face of budget 2013-14.
Following is live coverage of the budget speech from Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.
For the quick glance at the budget you could click here. Please keep updating for new developments.
The live blog has been concluded.
18:53 Budget speech concludes with a couplet of national poet Allama Muhammad Iqbal
18:51 Ishaq appeals all the legislators to get united for the nation and to make Pakistan the fifth strongest nation
18:49 An increase of 10 percent has been made in amount pensions with minimum pension amount to be Rs. 5000
18:49 Discretionary funds for the ministers have been finished
18:46 A complete ban has been imposed on purchasing new vehicles for officials except for law and order purposes
18:45 PM House expenditures have been decreased up to 44 percent
18:44 About 30 cuts to be made in governmental expenditure
18:43 VVIP personalities have to pay duties on all luxury vehicles
18:43 The number of ministries has been decreased to 28 from 40
18:42 About Rs. 40 billion savings are being made through cost cutting measures
18:41 Secret funds have been ended for all ministries except intelligence agencies
18:37 Rs. 45 billion was spent under uplifting programs by former prime ministers against the transparent procedures during 2012-13. From now onward this program has been finished.
18:36 Every member of national assembly can give recommendations for public works under ‘Tameer e Watan Program
18:35 About 50,000 people to get benefit from PM Housing Scheme
18:33 Micro-finance scheme to be launched for youths, male and female, and markup free loans will be provided to them out of which 50 percent will be females
18:32 Youths of less privileged including Sindh and South Punjab to get assistance for seeking higher education. Their tuition fee to be paid by federal government
18:31 Intelligent youths, studying in any higher education institute, to be given laptop and Higher Education Commission to supervise this Rs. 3 billion program
18:30 About 50,000 Youths will be given loans up to 08 percent markup to launch their businesses
18:28 About 25,000 Middle pass youths below 25 years to get skills development training
18:27 Youths below 25 years and holding masters degree to get 10,000 stipend/month during a one-year PM training program. Applications has been asked to be submitted through internet
18:27 Pan and ‘Chhalia’ prices to be increased
18:26 Hybrid electric vehicles upto 1200CC to get 100 exemption to reduce use of petroleum products while in 1800 to 2500CC vehicles to get 25 exemption
18:25 Renewable energy transfer measures include duty free import of Wind and Solar energy machinery, energy savers, solar power instruments have been exempted from duty
18:24 A high level committee led by FBR chairman will be functional to overview this matter
18:24 Relaxation in taxes has been costing national exchequer about Rs. 100 billion
18:23 Cigarette prices are increased after a raise Federal Excise Duty from 2 to 3 percent
18:23 Rs. 400/metric ton duty on Imported Canola Seed imposed
18:22 General Exemption on taxes to Tribal Belt and KPK has ended and now it is making ambiguity in other areas so it should be removed
18:21 Federal Excise Duty on drinks to be 9 percent from present 6 percent
18:20 Sales tax relaxation on packed milk has been withdrawn
18:20 FBR’s newly developed system to be used in other sectors to increase the revenue
18:18 Additional sales tax has to be paid by unregistered industrialists to encourage them to get registered their businesses
18:18 Dar says he will be first person to give this levy
18:17 A nominal levy, about 0.5 percent should imposed to movable asset wealthy persons to support Income Support Fund and to assist needy persons
18:15 About 0.5 million profiles of persons to be researched to expand tax net
18:13 Suggestion was made to impose agriculture tax as per nod of provincial governments and to assess the whole matter to know who should be taxed and who shouldn’t
18:13 Merchants and traders’s tax rate to be set at 25 percent
18:11 Small to mid-range salary class is being facilitated this year
18:10 Foreign Dramas and Films to be taxed from now onwards
18:10 Income tax laws will be reformed
18:09 An adjustable withholding tax will be introduced for hotels, clubs and halls to encourage tax payment
18:08 Volunteer tax payers to be provided simple tax system
18:08 Income tax is being made adjustable
18:06 Five years tax relief to be increased to 10 years in economic zones
18:06 From 2014:15, corporate tax rate to be brought 30 percent from 35 percent
18:04 Tax reforms to be brought to increase tax collection up to 15 percent per year in next five years. Irregularities correction, expanding tax net, making tax rate logical, facilitating tax payers and ending corruption in FBR are some reforms to be made, Dar says.
18:03 The persons who are already paying taxes will not get further burden instead new tax payers to be included in the tax net.
18:01 Deficit to remain 6.01 percent this fiscal year from the present about 8 percent, about Rs. 1674 billion
18:00 The total amount of the budget is around Rs. 34 trillion
17:59 Provincial governments to get 23 increased amount from the federal government
17:56 Ministry of Housing and Works starts working on a project to build houses on 3 marla plots besides taking others measures including development of 1000 housing schemes across the country and sharing housing markup by government
17:55 Privatization process to be reviewed to increase private investment
17:54 Boost in trade ties with neighbor countries to be ensured
17:52 Export Processing Zone to be made attractive for industrial growth keeping in view of boom of industries for the uplift of the country.
17:51 Population welfare projects to get Rs. 8 billion throughout the provinces
17:51 Ramadan Relief Package to be provided to masses
17:51 Withholding tax imposed on hotels, clubs and marriage halls
17:50 PM decides to start laptop scheme in the country
17:50 Rs. 18 billion has been allocated for higher education, 2449 scholars abroad to be increased to 6000 scholars this year
17:48 About Rs. 39 billions have been reserved for the Railways this year, which is 50 percent than the estimated amount
17:47 Railways minister is working on a comprehensive planning including turning Railways into a corporation, professional board of directors, usage of Railways assets on public-private partnership, increasing allocation of funds to modernize the Railways system.
17:46 The real problem of Railways is not lack of resources but mismanagement is the real problem
17:45 Counting a number of reasons for the Railways losses, Dar says Railways in its nature a profitable corporation and it has priceless lands and network to connect the country.
17:43 Railways, which once had an effective communication way, was ruined.
17:42 M-9 will be completed within record time to connect Karachi with Hyderabad
17:41 To connect Gwadar Port with norther areas of the country, immediate measures to be taken
17:40 Quoting a number of power projects, Dar says the program shows that we have long term vision for the power crisis. About Rs. 459 will be spend on power projects this year
17: 38 Tax relaxation on luxurious cars has been taken back while loans from Rs. 2,00,000 to Rs. 2 million to be provided at 8 percent markup
17:37 Every water drop to be used for the power generation and Rs. 59 billion investment has been planned this year
17:35 Some important measures of the government include: GDP to be expanded, inflation to be kept within one digit, deficit to be decreased by four percent, foreign reserves to be increased up to $ 20 billion
17:33 Fee Payment Scheme has been suggested for students in unprivileged areas
17:33 Income Support Fund monthly stipend has been increased Rs. 1200 after a raise of 20 percent
17:31 Public Income Support Fund amount to be taken to Rs. 75 billion from the present 40 billion
17:31 Upto Rs. 0.5 million Qarz e Hasan to be given to needy persons for employment opportunities
17: 30 Public corporations, which ought to be sold, will be sold
17:30 Competent professionals to be appointed in public corporations through transparent recruiting process
17:29 Transparent auction for 3G technology to be ensured
17:29 A series of economic ventures will be started with such a big amount of development funds
17:29 Rs. 1155 billion development to be spend, which is historic
17:28 Employment opportunities to be created
17:28 An amount of $ 800 million to be recovered from Etisalat outght to made after PTCL privatization
17:28 Foreign treasury bills to made materialized to strengthen foreign reserves
17:27 Subsidy system will be reviewed ensuring that poor and rich should be treated in a well manner
17:26 Stern action to be taken against people responsible for the delay in the project
17:25 Nandipur Power Project was put on delayed for only uncalled for formalities and the amount of the project has reached Rs. 57 billion from Rs. 24 billion
17:24 However, some others measures like payment of full bill to help government. Comprehensive energy policy to be announced soon.
17:23 PM Nawaz Sharif has made historic to settle circular debt within next 60 days to minimize load-shedding.
17:22 Energy crisis is like a mountain. Immediate measures to be taken to end this
17:20 Inflation control is the next pillar of the budget strategy, deficit will be reduced through saving schemes, cheap foreign loans, expatriate money to be taken back
17:19 The first pillar is to strengthen basis while the deficit will be taken to 4 percent in next three years
17:18 Present budget will be first step for long journey to improve the econmy
17:16 Debt amount reaches Rs. 14,000 billion
17:14 Speech was stopped due to Azaan
17: 07 State Bank has only $ 6 billion foreign reserves
17:05 We are not disappointed with the deteriorated economy
17:00 Dar starts his speech with an emotional tone