By Farzana Shah
The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has presented Rs1, 118.3 billion budget for the financial year 2021-22 in the provincial assembly.
Rs371 billion have been allocated for development projects in which Rs270.7 billion will be spent in the settled districts of the province and Rs100.3 billion in the integrated tribal districts. The federal tax revenue has been estimated at Rs475.6 billion.
While Rs88.8 billion are expected to be received in terms of external development assistance, a total increase of 37 per cent is proposed in the salaries of government employees.
It is proposed to increase the house rent of government employees who do not benefit from it by at least 7%. The minimum wage has been fixed at Rs21,000 including 10% increase in pension.
Rs2.6 billion have been set aside in the budget for 20,000 monthly stipends for imam mosques/religious preachers.
In the budget for the next financial year, apart from the Prime Minister’s Ehsas Program for the poor and Universal Health Insurance coverage, Rs10 billion have also been allocated for wheat subsidy and Rs10 billion for providing food packages to the poor.
The assistance will be provided through the Bank of Khyber for the economic rehabilitation of small and medium scale industrialists, women, minorities, youth and businesses affected by the corona.
Rs10.4 billion will be spent on the district development plan this year.
In the budget tax exemptions and relief to the poor measures has also been considered to increase economic activities. According to which, reduction in 12 categories and low rates in 17 categories, reduction in agricultural tax, registration and relief in the construction sector, reduction and reduction in CVT, cancellation of professional tax.
Rs500 billion have been set aside for development plus budget. Issues such as health card plus, provision of furniture in schools and increase in budget for medicines are included in the development plus budget.
Rs424 billion have been set aside in the service delivery budget. Teachers, doctors, nurses’ salaries, supply of medicines in hospitals, supply of fuel to rescue 1122 ambulances are part of the service delivery budget.
Total budget of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for the financial year 2021-22 is estimated at Rs1,118 billion.
Rs199 billion earmarked for integrated districts.
Rs919 billion earmarked for the rest of the province.
The provincial development budget is 10% higher than the previous financial year.
Overall, salaries of government employees increased by 37%.
All government employees will get 10% ad hoc relief.
Functional or sectoral allowance for employees who do not get special allowance increased by 20%.
House rent of non-government employees increased by 7%.
Pension expenditure has increased by 100%
Widows’ pension increased by 100% instead of 75%.
Pension expenditure for 2021-22 will be 13.8%.
The minimum retirement age is set at 55 years and the service limit at 25 years
The minimum monthly wage of laborers raised to Rs21,000.
Rs10 billion wheat subsidy will be given to the poor.
Rs10 billion food basket program for the poor.
Loans of Rs10 billion will be provided to industrialists, youth and women through the Bank of Khyber.