Issue 39

Budget Study Centre   Issue 39
May 02, 2019


Fortnightly Budget News Alerts

Bailout talks with IMF far from conclusion

Express Tribune by Shahbaz Rana (May 02, 2019)

ISLAMABAD:  Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have yet to bridge their differences in three major policy areas, as the global lender seeks upfront monetary tightening and elimination of the flow of circular debt from the first year of the programme. Pakistani and IMF officials held a first face-off plenary meeting on Wednesday in which all key policy areas were discussed… Read More

Budget deficit likely to touch record Rs2.7 trillion despite mini-budget

The Nation (May 02, 2019)

ISLAMABAD-Pakistan budget deficit is expected to touch record Rs2.7 trillion in current fiscal year mainly due to massive shortfall in tax collection and increase in interest payment. The country’s budget deficit would widen to Rs2.7 trillion in the current financial year, which would be equal to 7 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). The budget deficit would be highest ever… Read More

FBR misses tax revenue target by record margin

Express Tribune (May 01, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The shortfall in tax collection has widened to a record Rs345 billion in the first ten months of this fiscal year amid differences between Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) over a strategy to achieve the tax target for the next fiscal year. Despite a steep shortfall in tax revenues, the federal government on Tuesday surprisingly… Read More

Free trade agreement with China to help revive Pakistani economy

Global Times (May 01, 2019)

The second phase of Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Pakistan and China will give a boom to Pakistan’s agriculture besides supporting its industry as more Pakistani products are expected to have access to the Chinese market with zero tariff. China is already investing dozens billion US dollars through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in Pakistan, and local observers believe that the… Read More

Cabinet unlikely to consider tax amnesty scheme, budget strategy paper today

Business Recorder by Zaheer Abassi (Apr 30, 2019)

A meeting of the federal cabinet is unlikely to consider budget strategy paper and tax amnesty scheme today (Tuesday) as a special meeting will be convened for extensive discussion on them before their approval due to their impact on the people. Sources on condition of anonymity stated as measures finalised in the budget strategy paper will have impact on people”s life, therefore… Read More

FY19 budget: Rs 20 million earmarked to pick up cost of remittances

Business Recorder (Apr 30, 2019)

The government allocated Rs 20 million in the budget for 2018-19 to pick up the transaction cost of remittances with the objective of facilitating overseas Pakistanis to remit money through formal channels under Pakistan Remittance Imitative (PRI). This was stated by sources in the finance ministry and State Bank of Pakistan. Specific cost of the remitter or an institution… Read More

Revenue-generating sectors to get priority in next budget

Dawn News (Apr 29, 2019)

QUETTA: The Balochistan government has decided to give importance to revenue-generating sectors in the next budget. A meeting presided over by Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani reviewed budget proposals for the next financial year and implementation of the ongoing development schemes. The meeting observed that the sectors which had no role in revenue generation… Read More

IMF team arrives today for talks on bailout package

Daily Times (Apr 29, 2019)

A team of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is set to arrive in Pakistan on Monday (today) to hold technical-level talks on a three-year bailout package. The IMF mission, headed by Ernesto Ramirez Rigo, will reach on April 29 and will stay in the country till May 7. The mission will also visit various institutions during their stay in the country. Pakistani side for negotiations with the IMF will be led by… Read More

Upcoming budget termed crucial

The News (Apr 28, 2019)

LAHORE: The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has warned that the ongoing economic scenario has made upcoming budget more crucial, a statement said. Business community expects the government to keep its suggestions on top if it wants to reduce the economic challenges, it added. LCCI office-bearers said electricity and gas prices must be uniform in… Read More

Budget 209-2020: PCMA demands relief package for development of chemical industry

Business Recorder (Apr 27, 2019)

Pakistan Chemical Manufacturers Association (PCMA) has demanded of the government to provide a comprehensive relief package for development of chemical industry in the forthcoming budget. PCMA’s Secretary General Syed Iqbal Kidwai on Friday said the association’s member companies are playing key role in providing important chemicals to export oriented sectors. But, despite huge potential… Read More

EFP-EC present Federal Budget proposals 2019-2020

Daily Times (Apr 27, 2019)

Majyd Aziz, President EFP, while introducing Federal Budget Proposals 2019-2020 stated, “The Economic Council of the Employers’ Federation of Pakistan in its first ever endeavor initiated pragmatic, doable, and workable solutions to the various economic and financial issues impeding the economic growth and prosperity of Pakistan. The proposals have been formulated after intensive… Read More

PM Khan calls for tackling climate change poverty as Pakistan, China enter next CPEC phase

Dawn News (Apr 26, 2019)

Prime Minister Imran Khan, in his keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the second Belt and Road Forum in Beijing on Friday, called for greater attention to tackling climate change and poverty as Pakistan and China enter the next phase of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The prime minister appreciated the significance of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), saying it “marks a… Read More

Pakistan to begin talks with IMF from April 29

Pakistan Today (Apr 26, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will begin discussing the aid package for Islamabad from April 29. The IMF mission, headed by Ernesto Ramirez Rigo, will reach Pakistan on April 29 and will be in the country till May 7. The mission will also visit various institutions during their time in the country. According to the sources, the Ministry of Finance issued a notification… Read More

Inflation not deficits is the new challenge for Pakistan’s economy

The Bloomberg (Apr 25, 2019)

High inflation is emerging as the new challenge for Pakistan, where authorities are trying to secure an International Monetary Fund bailout to avert a balance-of-payments crisis. Consumer prices in March rose to the highest level since 2013, with gains seen hovering above 8 percent through the first-quarter of 2020. That is likely to put the State Bank of Pakistan, the… Read More

Govt to present next budget by end of May

Pakistan Today (Apr 24, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The government will be presenting the Federal Budget 2018-19 by the end of next month, a government official revealed on Wednesday. Talking to media after the meeting of National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs, Finance Secretary Younus Dagha said that his ministry has expedited its work with regard to the next fiscal budget… Read More

Early warning? The resignation of Pakistan’s Finance Minister raises unpleasant questions

The Diplomat (Apr 23, 2019)

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan’s confidant and a longtime member of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) party, Asad Umar, resigned as finance minister last week. The development comes at a time when Pakistan is facing a serious economic crisis. Umar’s resignation raises fresh questions regarding Pakistan’s plans for averting an economic crisis amid bailout talks with the… Read More

PM Imran directs for pro-people budget

Pakistan Today (Apr 23, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday directed his cabinet members to introduce policies in the public interest and improve their performance in order to resolve the issues faced by the people. Briefing media persons about the decisions of the federal cabinet meeting, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Firdous Ashiq Awan said that the prime minister had… Read More

Pakistan government ready to pay political cost to salvage sinking economy

Arab News  (Apr 22, 2019)

KARACHI: As Pakistan steps up efforts to negotiate loan program from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) before presenting federal budget for fiscal year FY20 next month, the top officials say the government is taking steps to salvage sinking economy, bracing itself for political repercussions. Pakistan is currently negotiating with IMF expecting $6-8 billion loan program for … Read More

Dr Hafeez Shaikh ‘ineligible’ to chair NFC meeting, present next budget

Pakistan Today (Apr 22, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: Since the government has replaced the finance minister with an adviser, a number of issues have surfaced at the finance ministry amidst the absence of a full-fledged minister, it was learnt on Monday. As the important meeting of the National Finance Commission (NFC) is scheduled to be held on April 29, a legal issue has been raised that whether Prime Minister’s Adviser on Finance… Read More

PFC presents proposals on budget 2019-20 for enhancing furniture export

Dunya News (Apr 21, 2019)

(APP) – Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) Chief Executive Mian Kashif Ashfaq on Saturday, on behalf of furniture producers, presented a set of proposals for upcoming Federal Budget 2019-20 to the Advisor to the Prime Minister, Abdul Razak Dawood. The PFC demanded allocation of special chunk of funds to boost furniture exports, besides giving the sector the… Read More

PFC presents budget proposals to Dawood

The Nation (Apr 21, 2019)

ISLAMABAD   –    Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) Chief Executive Mian Kashif Ashfaq Saturday, on behalf of furniture producers, presented a set of proposals for upcoming federal budget 2019-20 to Advisor to Prime Minister Abdul Razak Dawood. The PFC demanded allocation of special chunk of funds to boost furniture exports, besides giving the sector the status of a full-fledged… Read More

‘Govt striving to promote industrialization, lure foreign investors’

Pakistan Today (Apr 20, 2019)

Advisor to Prime Minister on Institutional Reforms Dr Ishrat Hussain said on Saturday that the government is offering a number of incentives to entice foreign investors in various sectors of Pakistan’s economy. “The economic conditions of the country are continuously improving and can be gauged through various indicators,” he added while addressing an event titled… Read More

Hafiz Shaikh says budget to be announced not earlier than May 24

Dawn News (Apr 20, 2019)

In his first interaction with the media since being appointed the prime minister’s adviser on finance, Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh revealed that he had already spoken to finance ministry officials regarding the budget for the next fiscal year. Speaking outside the finance ministry on Saturday, shortly before he left for a meeting with the prime minister, Shaikh said he had directed the… Read More

HEC may face up to 50% budget cuts

Pakistan Today (Apr 19, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: A special meeting of the Higher Education Commission (HEC) Friday, under the Chairmanship of its chairman Dr Tariq Banuri, reviewed the implications of ongoing fiscal crisis for the higher education sector, and in particular the budgetary projections for the fiscal year 2019-20. The commission was informed that the projected recurring budget demand of the higher education… Read More

Pakistan’s GDP growth to fall behind Nepal, Maldives this year: UN

Dawn News (Apr 05, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The annual Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2019 titled ‘Ambitions beyond Growth’, released by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) on Thursday, forecast Pakistan’s GDP to remain lowest in the region at 4.2 per cent in 2019 and 4pc in 2020 compared to Bangladesh’s 7.3pc… Read More