In an attempt to overcome budget targets that went amiss, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet approved large amounts in grants and allowances, right before the closing of the current financial year.
In its latest session, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet approved Rs 27.8 billion in Technical Supplementary Grants (TSGs) related to parliamentarians schemes, Executive Allowances of FBR and other development schemes.
Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue, Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar chaired the meeting of the ECC of the Cabinet.
Breaking it down, the ECC approved Rs6 million in Executive allowance for the employees of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
The Finance Division had conveyed the approval of the federal government, for grant of Executive allowance @1.5 times of basic pay to the officers of BPS 17 to BPS-22 working in the federal secretariat with effect from July 1, 2022.
The allowance, however, was unforeseen at the time of preparation of budget for the current year 2022-23, and no additional budget was allocated for the said purpose by the Finance division. The original budget allocation of Rs 57.22 million for the current year proved to be insufficient to meet the expenditure.
Later the Finance minister also ensured that the said allowance would be in effect from December 2022, which did not happen. As per the rules, the gazetted federal secretariat employees would have been able to draw 150% more than their salary under the allowance.
In order to meet the shortfall through TSG, this division has approached FBR to surrender the requisite funds in their favour for this purpose.
Amongst the total Rs 27.8, the ECC also approved a Rs 1 billion TSG in the favor of the Ministry of Housing and Works, for development schemes in Punjab Province under (SAP) during the fiscal year 2022-23.
Similarly, the chair also approved Rs 14.8 billion in the favor of Ministry of Housing and Works for development schemes in FY23, Rs 1.2 billion in favor of Ministry of Housing and Works for execution of 15 left over development schemes of FY23 and Rs 5 billion in favor of Cabinet Division for Sustainable Development Goals Achievement Programme (SAP) during the current fiscal year.
According to details, the ECC approved Rs 1.773 billion in favor of Ministry of Energy (Power Division) for the execution of development schemes of Punjab and KP provinces under PSDP, Rs. 3.96 billion in favor of Ministry of Federal Education & Professional Training under WB Project – Higher Education Development in Pakistan, Rs. 130 million in favor of Ministry of Narcotics Control as TSG for FY23 and Rs 8 million in favor of Ministry of Narcotics Control for Operational Cost of Anti-Narcotics Force for the remaining part of FY23.