Approval of budget is mandate of NA, not NEC: Ahsan Iqbal

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ISLAMABAD: Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal said the development budget was a part of Finance Bill and was approved by National Assembly while according to the constitution of Pakistan, National Economic Council (NEC) had only a consultative role in this regard.

He said the federal government could not present a budget for only one quarter of the year as per demand of the chief ministers of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh and Balochistan.In a statement issued here, Ahsan Iqbal was of the view that after the 18th amendment, the main focus of federal development budget had been on the national infrastructure.

He said usually special funds were allocated for under developed provinces and the present government had allocated record funds for Balochistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan. Yesterday, Ahsan Iqbal termed the move of the three chief ministers walkout from as politically motivated and said that they were demanding three-month budget and inclusion of new schemes, but the federal government could not present the revenue and expenditure details on three-month basis.

The federal minister said the provinces can present three-month budget because they are supposed to make expenditures after receiving revenue from the Centre, but the federal government would have to collect taxes, so it’s not possible.“The NEC is the recommending body and approval of development programme is part of the Finance Bill to be approved by the National Assembly,” Iqbal added.

Orignally published by INP

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