ISLAMABAD: Government is giving subsidies to the private sector on the gas and electricity tariff besides they will be given loans as part of efforts to promote economic activity in the country, while 1655 lines of the imported raw material unavailable in the country will be exempted from Customs duty, said Finance Adviser Hafeez Sheikh on Wednesday at the pots-budget press conference.

Hafeez Sheikh said no change has been made in the tax on export industry. [the_ad id=”31605″]The government has enhanced allocations for protection of vulnerable segments of the society and development projects in the next year’s fiscal budget despite difficult economic situation.

Sheikh said the government has doubled allocations for the social safety net in the budget. “As compared to one hundred billion rupees of current fiscal year, we are allocating one hundred and ninety one billion rupees to protect the weak segments of the society,” he said.

Sheikh said Rs216 billion have been earmarked in the budget as a subsidy for those electricity consumers using less than 300 units per month. He said this subsidy is aimed at protecting the poor electricity consumers from the rise in power prices.

The adviser said that the annual development plan for the next fiscal year envisages allocation of Rs950 billion as against the Rs550 billion allocated for the current fiscal year.

He said this amount will be spent on the construction of infrastructure including roads and dams which will help create job opportunties for the youth. “We have also announced separate packages both for Karachi and Balochistan,.”

Hafeez Sheikh said the new budget also aims to reach out to the poor districts including those in Balochistan as well as erstwhile FATA. He said Rs152 billion rupees have been earmarked for the development of tribal districts.

Hafeez Sheikh said government also earmarked Rs2900 billion for the payment of interest of loans taken by the previous governments. He said the present government has inherited debt burden of thirty one thousand billion rupees.

The Adviser said all out efforts will be made to achieve the big target of Rs 5550 billion revenue collection. He said different measures, including automation of tax payment system, have been introduced to improve efficiency of the tax collection system. He said a system is being developed to ensure that no one remains non-filer. Every person purchasing a car or property will have to become a filer.

He said the industry selling its products within the country besides exporting them will have to pay tax. He said sales tax will be received at manufacturing level.