LAHORE: The PTI’s Punjab government on Friday announced its second budget improving the allocation for Annual Development Programme (ADP) 2019-20 to Rs350 billion from Rs238bn in the outgoing fiscal year.
Even this 47 per cent increase in the ADP fails to match the allocation of Rs635bn made by the Shahbaz Sharif government in 2017-18.
Presenting the budget in the Punjab Assembly on Friday, Finance Minister Hashim Jawan Bakht said keeping in view of PTI’s stated priorities of social protection, human development and regional equalisation, a sum of Rs125bn, or 35.7pc of the total ADP, allocated for social sectors.
“Around 35pc of the ADP will be apportioned for south Punjab under the regional equalisation policy for bringing the less developed areas on a par with the developed ones,” he said.
Major initiatives in the ADP include expansion of health insurance scheme to all 36 districts, construction of four dams, taming of hill torrents at three sites, enhancing productivity of four main crops (wheat, rice, sugarcane, oilseed), establishment of four universities and 63 colleges, rural accessibility plan worth Rs15bn, infrastructure development of three large industrial estates, and setting up of model agriculture markets.
Among the social sector, education is the main beneficiary as a sum of Rs89.8bn has been earmarked for it, while health stands second with Rs47.5bn allowance. Water supply & sanitation will gain Rs22.4 billion, local governments Rs6.3bn, social welfare Rs1.0bn and women development Rs0.8bn.
The second major share of ADP goes to special initiatives with Rs65.35bn allocation. However, no explanation of the initiatives has been included in the budget documents.
Infrastructure development claims Rs87.7bn funds to stand at the third position. Of them roads construction will get Rs35bn, irrigation projects Rs23.4bn, urban development Rs13.5bn, public buildings Rs9.8bn, and energy Rs6.0bn.
Production sectors like agriculture, food, livestock, forestry and fisheries, industries, mines and minerals get Rs34.5bn. Of it an amount of Rs15.5bn is the share of agriculture, Rs7.5bn of industries and skills development, Rs3.4bn of forestry, Rs3.5bn for livestock & dairy development, and Rs1.5bn of tourism.
A sum of Rs20.6bn has been apportioned for services sectors. These included governance & IT (Rs6.0bn), labour and human resource development (Rs0.3bn), transport (Rs13.5bn), and emergency services (Rs0.8bn).
The Planning & Development Department and PSFP will get Rs14bn, environment and human rights Rs1bn each, information & culture and Auqaf Rs0.3bn each, and archaeology Rs0.35bn.
FOREIGN FUNDED: The ADP also includes 26 projects with foreign funding. The donors include the World Bank (12 projects), Asian Development Bank (three projects), DFID (three projects), and one each projects funded by AIIB, France, IFAD, Korea, China, and JICA.
Published in Dawn, June 15th, 2019