QUETTA - PML-N led Balochistan coalition government yesterday unveiled the provincial budget for fiscal year 2017-18 with a total outlay of Rs 328 billion.

Adviser to Chief Minister on Finance Sardar Aslam Bezinjo presented the budget in the assembly session presided over by Speaker Raheela Hameed Khan Durrani.

“The budget envisages development programme of Rs 86 billion, including Rs 6.01 billion under foreign project assistance (FPA) and current expenditure of Rs 242 billion,” Sardar Aslam Bizenjo explained during the budget session here at the provincial assembly.

He said total estimated receipts are Rs 276.371 billion of which Rs 12.401 billion will be the province’s own income and Rs 229.97 billion federal transfers, including Rs 17.283 billion direct transfers.

The finance adviser said the deficit amounting to over Rs 50 billion would be met from the grants promised by the federal government, budgetary support and public representative programme (PRP) and by enhancing the province’s own resources.

He announced 10 percent increase in salaries of government servants and pensions of retired employees of Balochistan from July 1, 2017.

Regarding the measures which had so far been taken for ending unemployment in Balochistan, he said the provincial government had created innumerable new posts in various departments in the previous years while 7,971 new jobs during the fiscal year 2017-18.

He said law and order situation was the worst in the province, which gradually improved as a result of the government policies. The provincial government has earmarked Rs 35 billion under the head of public order and safety affairs will help improve peace across the province.

Sardar Bizenjo said Rs 45 billion had been allocated for the education sector in the provincial budget 2017-18. The government has evolved a five-year Balochistan Education Sector Plan under which not only new schools will be set up but also the existing schools will be upgraded, besides introducing early childhood education in the province.

He said 725 new primary schools will be established, 500 schools will be upgraded to middle level and 500 middle schools will be upgraded to higher level. Teachers are recruited on merit and every facility is provided in the schools, he claimed.

He said an amount of Rs 18 billion has been allocated for Health sector in the provincial budget with five percent increase as compared to that of the past year. The performance of the health department is currently far better than the previous years as today patients are being provided health facilities at their doorsteps.

Terming agriculture sector backbone of the provincial economy, he said the provincial government is determined to improve this sector and has allocated Rs 8 billion for it in the next budget. The allocated amount will be spent on bringing 57,000 acres of land under cultivation in Dera Bugti district while agricultural farms will also be set up across the province.

An amount of Rs 2.81 billion has been allocated for the livestock sector. This money will be spent on completion of eight major projects, besides ensuring veterinary services across the province.

Rs 7 billion were allocated for 355 schemes of which 125 are new and 230 ongoing. Rs 626 million have been earmarked for the park to be completed at Civil Secretariat, Quetta.

About Rs 90 million have been allocated for the construction of a library and a museum at Jinnah Road.

Total outlay of Balochistan Budget for fiscal year 2017-18 is Rs 328.502 billion, which include Rs 86.011 billion for development and Rs 242.491 billion for non-development expenditures. It is a deficit budge with deficit of Rs 52.131 billion.

The adviser announced the provincial government had allocated huge funds for 7,971 new jobs to resolve the issue of unemployment. “The creation of 7,971 new posts in government departments would help resolve the issue of unemployment,” he said.

Rs328b Balochistan budget unveiled