Pak`s annual Defence expenditure may balloon to Rs 580 bn

Pakistan`s annual expenditure could cross the budgeted allocation of Rs 442 billion and balloon to Rs 580 billion, according to a media report.

Islamabad: Pakistan`s annual expenditure
could cross the budgeted allocation of Rs 442 billion and
balloon to Rs 580 billion, according to a media report.

Pakistan`s Defence spending exceeded the budgetary
limits for the first quarter of July-September.

The defence spending exceeded the budgetary limits for
the first quarter by about Rs 28 billion because of the war on
terror and the military`s prolonged stay in the restive tribal
belt bordering Afghanistan, a senior unnamed official told the
Dawn newspaper.

The defence spending for July-September was estimated
at Rs 89 billion but the finance ministry`s provisional
figures for the period put it at about Rs 117 billion, the
official said.

The defence expenditure during the same period last
year was about Rs 86 billion.

With this pace of spending, the annual defence
expenditure could cross Rs 580 billion, against the Rs 552
billion estimated by the International Monetary Fund and the
government`s budgeted allocation of Rs 442 billion, the
official said.

Higher than planned expenditure on defence and flood
rescue and relief work and lower than estimated revenue
collection in the first quarter has increased the quarterly
fiscal deficit to 1.6 per cent from the budgeted target of 1.4
per cent of GDP, the official said.

The finance ministry asked ministries, divisions and
all federal departments in August to limit their expenditures
to 20 per cent of the approved budget during the first quarter
of the fiscal year.

The finance ministry`s guidelines for the current
expenditure require all government agencies and ministries,
including the offices of the President and Prime Minister, to
keep expenditures at 20 per cent of the approved allocation
for the first and second quarters of the fiscal year and 30
per cent in the third and fourth quarters, the official said.

The official said provisional data on fiscal
operations had been shared with the IMF and would be made
public by end of this month.

PTI

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