ISLAMABAD: Admitting failure towards achieving the economic targets set for the outgoing fiscal year 2013-14, Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar on Monday released the Pakistan Economic Survey, a pre-budget document saying the country, however, provisionally achieved 4.14 per cent GDP growth rate.
He will also present the second budget by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government in the National Assembly on Tuesday.
The pre-budget document highlights the overall performance of economy during the outgoing fiscal year, providing a realistic feedback and basis for planning.
Related: Dar set to unveil tax-heavy budget
Launching the survey at a press conference, he said this is less than the targeted 4.14 per cent but it is for the first time in six years that the country has entered the territory of four per cent growth this year.
And, the GDP growth rate would be increased one per cent each during the next three years taking it to 7 per cent in 2017. Similarly, the industrial growth has been recorded at 5.84 per cent as against 1.37 per cent last year.
The minister also said that the large-scale manufacturing recorded growth of 5.135 per cent as against 4.08 per cent last year. He said electricity generation and gas distribution growth last year was minus 16.33 per cent and this year it has grown by 3.72 per cent.
Construction recorded growth of 11.31 per cent this year as against minus 1.685 per cent last year while wholesale and retail trade increased by 5.181 per cent as against 3.38 per cent last year, he said.
Ishaq Dar said that transport and communication recorded growth of 2.89 per cent as against 2.88 per cent last year while agriculture sector showed growth of 2.12pc against 2.88pc last year.
Major crops showed growth of 3.74 per cent as compared to 1.19pc last year. Wheat production this year is 25.29 million tonnes as compared 24.21 million tonnes last year, he said.
Rice production this year stood at 6.8 million tonnes as against 5.54 million tonnes; sugarcane 66.47 million tonnes as compared to 63.75 million tonnes last year and maize production this year is 4.531 million ronnes as against 4.22 million tonnes last year.
Provisional estimates of cotton production this year are 12.77 million bales as against 13.03 million bales last year. Similarly, grams and oil seeds recorded growth of minus 3.52 per cent.
The minister said inflation in the first eleven months of the current financial year was 8.6 per cent as against 7.5pc last year.
Exports in ten months of the outgoing financial year stood at $21 billion as against $20.1 billion last year, showing an increase of 900 million dollars.
Ishaq Dar said the grant of GSP Plus concession by the European Union has started impacting our textile sector positively as it grew by 7 per cent in value terms.
According to the survey, imports in ten months of the outgoing financial year stood at $37.1 billion as against $36.7 billion last year, indicating 1.2 per cent increase. The minister said there was a significant increase in import of plant and machinery which was a positive indication.
Workers' remittances in ten months of current financial year reached $12.9 billion as against $11.6 billion last year, showing a growth of 11.5pc. Foreign investment this year stood at $2.979 billion against $1.277 billion last year.
Foreign exchange reserves presently stood at $13.63 billion against $11.4 billion dollar last year, said the minister.
The survey further unveiled that per capita income this year has increased to $1,386 from $1,339 last year. Stock market crossed 29,700 points and its capitalisation increased by about 38 per cent. Tax revenue as percentage of GDP this year is 7pc as against 6.8pc last year.
Non-tax revenue as percentage of GDP remains at 2.7pc while total expenditure as percentage of GDP reduced to 12.9pc from 14.8pc last year.
Development expenditure this year as percentage of GDP was 2.2 per cent as against 2pc last year. Fiscal deficit in first ten months was 3.2 per cent as compared to 4.7pc last year.
The finance minister further said that FBR tax collections in 11 months have grown by 16.4 per cent.
Ishaq Dar said the State Bank of Pakistan’s borrowing last year was Rs416.8 billion, but this year the government paid back Rs10.5 billion to the bank.
Hinting an increase in the defence budget, he said the PML-N government has made the defence of the country invincible.
To a question, he said major incentives will be given to the private sector to restore the confidence of the investors.
Dar dispelled the impression that the federal developmental projects were all Central Punjab specific, adding that major development projects were being executed in all parts of the country.
To another question, he said SROs will be rolled out in the next three years.
The minister said that Rs75 billion have been allocated for the Benazir Income Support Programme during the current year and an increase in the allocation is expected for the next year.
It is estimated that around 900,000 jobs will be created in the next four years after the introduction of G-3 and G-4 spectrum, said the finance minister.
– Sohail Iqbal Bhatti contributed to the reporting of this story