Pak govt gave military Rs 687 bn over annual budget
Islamabad: Pakistan`s outgoing government has acknowledged that it provided grants of Rs 687 billion to the powerful military for security-related spending that were in addition to the annual defence budgets.
An annual grant of about Rs 200 billion was kept under wraps for years by the government led by the Pakistan People`s Party.
The release of the grants was acknowledged in the budget strategy paper ? a document that covers this fiscal`s revised budget estimates and projections for the next three years, The Express Tribune reported today.
The burden of the annual grant is likely to be passed on to taxpayers from next year, the report said.
The PPP-led coalition government conceded it was paying the grant for security-related spending, which was earlier largely financed from payments made by the US through its Coalition Support Fund.
The government had never formally admitted the release of the grant in the past though the matter was reported by the media.
The US suspended payments from its Coalition Support Fund after ties hit a low in the wake of the killing of two Pakistani men by American security contractor Raymond Davis in 2011.
Ties were further hit by the unilateral US military raid that killed Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad the same year though payments from the CSF resumed this year.
The budget strategy paper stated that from 2009 to the current fiscal year, a total grant of Rs 687 billion was provided to the armed forces for security-related spending.
The highest payment of Rs 215 billion was made in fiscal 2009-10.
Much of the additional grant was paid out of the reimbursements from the CSF by the US.
During the current fiscal, the US has reimbursed USD 1.9 billion.