Only 10 percent more uplift funds for Sindh this year


Facing severe financial constraints, the province’s development budget under the Annual Development Programme (ADP) for the fiscal year 2011-12 is likely to be increased only by 10 percent, Pakistan Today has learnt.
The development budget for the province’s 23 district governments is also expected to be increased by 15 to 20 percent from last year’s allocation of Rs 18 billion.
A high-level meeting of budget-makers, including the Finance Department officials, was held on Wednesday under the chairmanship of Additional Chief Secretary (Development) Ishaq Lashari.
Interestingly, sources privy to the budget making process told Pakistan Today that the Sindh Planning and Development (P&D) Department authorities, preparing the development budget, have been instructed to work out two ADPs for the upcoming financial year and the chief minister would make the final decision. The two ADPs include last year’s original development budget of Rs 115 billion, which was later cut down by around 40 percent and stood at Rs 77 billion, due to the last year’s flood in the province.
The new ADP will put special focus on developmental schemes in social, health, education and energy sectors but due to financial constraints, the schemes submitted by administrative departments for the forthcoming ADP have been drastically curtailed in line with the government’s policy of ensuring maximum allocation of funds for the ongoing schemes and lesser funds for new schemes.
Beside an increase of at least 10 percent in the upcoming ADP, a big chunk – at least Rs 6 billion – of foreign sponsored projects would also be a part of the provincial development outlay in the next year’s budget.
Under the ADP 2011-12, the expected allocation for education would stand at Rs 7.733 billion; health Rs 6.930bn; coal and energy Rs 4.944bn; science and information technology Rs 2.172bn; agriculture Rs 7.319bn; transport and communication Rs 14.300bn; physical planning and housing Rs 6.894bn; water and drainage Rs 4.400bn; forest, wildlife and CDA Rs 839 million; industries Rs 1.491bn; investment development Rs 429m; mines and mineral development Rs 446m; sports and youth affairs Rs 502m; culture Rs 497.128m; tourism Rs 239m; manpower and employment Rs 176.870m; information and archives Rs 123.707m; auqaf Rs 298.035m; minority affairs Rs 110m; social welfare Rs 192.211m; women development Rs 371.554m; environment Rs 245.888m; rural development Rs 390.555m; and antiquities Rs 533m.
Moreover, funds amounting to around Rs 37.284bn are expected to be earmarked for special projects; Rs 9.306bn for special packages; Rs 4.466bn for Sindh government’s priority programmes; Rs 2.2bn for special directives; Rs 5.907bn for public-private partnership projects; and at least Rs 3.081bn as matching allocation, the sources disclosed.