Budget will focus on inclusive growth: Dar

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar Wednesday said that budget for the next fiscal year would focus on inclusive growth and all stakeholders would be taken on board in the process of its finalisation.

Dar chaired a meeting to review progress of preparations for the upcoming budget for fiscal year 2017-18 and directed budget wing to keep the timeline in mind.

Secretary Finance Tariq Bajwa gave an overview and update to the minister about the state of preparations for budget and co-ordination with different ministries and departments in this regard.

An official said that priorities committee’s meeting to finalise the budget of the ministries and division is likely to take place in the first week of April 2017, followed by APCC for approval of development budget and national accounts to work out the growth rate for the current fiscal year as well as finalisation of previous years.

The finance secretary stated that as directed by the finance minister, all stakeholders including economic experts, chambers of commerce & industries, business community and traders etc would be taken on board while finalising the budget.

The minister was informed that a proper mechanism for in-depth liaison with these stakeholders has already been devised. All budget activities would be undertaken according to the timelines given in the schedule shared with the finance minister in the previous meeting on the matter, added the secretary finance.

The finance minister said that, as always, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government would accord top priority to the well-being of the people in the budget for next fiscal year.

He maintained that the budget would also focus on measures for further improving ease of doing business and increasing financial inclusion in the country.

The minister said that the budget would be finalised keeping in view the primary aim of achieving higher, sustainable and inclusive economic growth.