KP foreign loans stand at Rs330bn, says Jhagra

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Minister for Health and Finance Taimur Saleem Jhagra, while concluding the budget proposals for the financial year 2022-23, said that the burden of foreign loans on the province is Rs330 billion.

The minister claimed that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is the only province where the domestic debt is zero.

Jhagra said that the budget includes all “game-changer” projects and loans are 25% of the Rs1,332 billion budget. “We have built infrastructure and increased revenue,” the minister said during his address in the KP assembly. He lamented that the dollar has reached the highest level in the history of the country which is affecting every individual.

The finance minister said that from now onward the Executive Allowance will be provided to civil servants on the basis of their performance and will be called a “performance allowance” which he termed “real” reforms. He said funds have been earmarked in the budget for transgender persons and the promotion of technical education. He added that new units have been set up in hospitals. The finance minister said that new parks have been established and the beautification projects are also in progress.

The finance minister said that KP government has increased provincial resources in the past three years. He said that oil and gas are the province’s resources but the province is dependent on the federal government for it. The Finance Minister informed that shops owned by the endowment department have a rent of just Rs5,000 while their market value is up to Rs100,000 per month which needs to adjust according to the current situation.

“We have raised our voice at every forum for the province’s rights,” The minister said, adding that no opposition members in the KP Assembly are criticizing the federal government for not providing the province its rights.

He said that for the first time, the local government elections were held in the tribal districts during the PTI government. He admitted that the tribal people did not get the promised 3% NFC share but KP has given up to Rs130 billion in tribal employment schemes in tribal districts and billions of rupees have been given to tribal youth.

Jhjagra said the provincial government has given Rs6 billion from the current budget to the tribal districts while other provinces have not paid a single penny for the uplift of the tribal districts as promised at the time of the merger. He said that the federal government has now reduced the development budget of the tribal area and also said that the health card scheme will not get funds from 30 June but the province will not compromise on the health of tribal people.

Aziz Buneri
Aziz Buneri
Aziz Buneri covers financial, social, political and regional issues for Pakistan Today and Profit. He can be reached at [email protected]

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