ISLAMABAD: Federal Finance Minister, Miftah Ismail on Friday announced the federal budget for Financial year 2022-23 with a total out lay of Rupees 9.5 Trillion.

The maiden budget by newly formed coalition government consisting of almost all political parties except Pakistan Tehreek-e- Insaaf which was ousted after a successful “ No- Confidence Motion”, came up with a balanced budget focusing huge development in agricultural sector and relief to low income groups.

Difficult measures and decision are to be taken for an economic turn around, sustainable development and industrial boom to steer the country out odf worst ever economic situation, said Miftah Ismail who had a smooth sailing as Opposition is almost non existing at present.

He announced a number of steps to exempt the agricultural sector from Sales Tax, custom duties etc aimed at increasing per acre  yield and improved  performance.

The salaried class was given an increase of 15 per cent while the limit of taxable income was increased from Rupees 600,000 to 1,200,000.

The Federal Minister also announced a number of relief measures for low income groups. Several measures, proposal have been announced for export oriented industrial sector besides administrative measures including Zero Load-Shedding for Industries

He said the government had embarked on introducing drastic measures in the Federal Budget 2022-23 to uplift and put the economy on sustainable growth trajectory.

The finance minister said out of total Rs 9.502 trillion budget, an amount of Rs 2,950 billion had been allocated for debt servicing and Rs 800 billion earmarked for the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP 2022-23).

He said an amount of Rs 1,523 billion had been earmarked for defence expenditures, Rs 550 billion for civil administration and Rs 530 billion for pensions. Similarly, Rs 699 billion had been proposed for providing targeted subsidies to the poor segments of society.

The federal government’s net revenue is projected to be Rs4,904 billion, non-tax revenue will be Rs2,000 billion, and the expenditure is expected to be around Rs9,502 billion for the next fiscal year, Miftah said.

Pakistan will also spend Rs3,950 for debt servicing, the finance minister told the house, adding that the tax imposed on non-filers has been proposed to be hiked from 100% to 200%.

The total expenditure for interest payments during the current fiscal year has been estimated at Rs3,144 billion — including Rs2,770 domestic and Rs373 international — while for the next year, it will climb to Rs3,950.

The finance minister added that the public debt of the outgoing fiscal would stand at 72.5% of the GDP as it reached Rs44,365 billion in March 2022.

The FBR’s tax revenue for the ongoing fiscal year is projected to clock in at Rs6,000 billion, and the contribution of the provinces will stand at Rs3,512, he said, adding that the centre’s net revenue is estimated to be Rs3,803 and non-tax revenue Rs1,315.

The total expenditure of the federal government for the current fiscal year is expected to clock in at Rs9,118 billion, the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) at Rs550 billion, while Pakistan will spend Rs3,144 billion on debt servicing, Miftah said.

For the first time in history of the country the debt servicing has risen to a whopping 29.1 per cent and 45 .4 per cent of the total current expenditure.

The Federal Minister at intervals held the PTI responsible for worst financial management and said it left land mines in Economy for the new government.

We have to decide that whether we leave the country in bad economic situation, announce elections and focus on getting a fresh mandate and new term or take on the economic challenges, take unpopular decisions aimed at steering out the National Economy from worst ever crisis.

The inexperienced team, U turns and in-ability to take key decisions on time drew country to the brink of “Default”, said Miftah Ismail adding that sustainable development, focused austerity measures, increased economic activity and a robust agricultural sector will soon pay off in shape of strengthened economy.

He ended his speech with a verse which said only those people see success who works hard, achieve targets and stays away from mere lip service.