Govt set to present first budget

Islamabad: As the Pakistan Tahrik-e-Insaf (PTI) led government is all set to present its first budget, Prime

Minister Imran Khan has summoned a special meeting of the federal cabinet to give finalise Federal Budget

for the fiscal year 2019-20 on Tuesday.

The federal budget will be presented on June 11 (Tuesday) in the Parliament.

The meeting is expected to give approval for Rs 6.8 trillion federal budget and the budget deficit would be Rs

3 trillion.

The budget envisages fiscal management, revenue mobilization, measures for economic stabilization and

growth, reduction in non-development expenditures; boosting exports besides providing relief to the masses,

promoting investment for job creation and people friendly policies for the socio economic prosperity of the

country.

Main focus in the budget would be on fiscal consolidation, revenue mobilization while the government is

likely to enhance allocations for social safety net for providing maximum relief to vulnerable segment of the

society, sources said.

The government has proposed to allocate more than Rs250 billion for the payments of interests on loans, while

a total of Rs925 billion would be allocated for development program of the federal government.

On revenue side, the government would introduce measures for bringing improvements in the system of tax

collection, broadening the tax base, and facilitation to tax payers, they said and argued that a strong revenue

generation will play a crucial role in achieving the targets for economic growth. The government is likely to

set the revenue collection target at Rs5.55 trillion for the fiscal year 2019-20.

The government has announced health tax on cigarette to cut rising tobacco consumption that kills nearly

160,000 Pakistanis every year.

The Ministry of National Health Services (NHS) Regulation and Coordination recommended the measure to

discourage cigarette smoking, increase revenues and save money by cutting tobacco-related health care costs.

Health tax of Rs10 per pack of 20 cigarette sticks and 1 per cent tax on all beverages (Rs1 on 250ml) has been

proposed by NHS Ministry along with an increase in Federal Excise Duty on cigarettes in the upcoming

budget.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has also approved the new tax and announced to end the tax-free cigarette facility

for the prime minister, chief ministers and governors of all provinces to control the use of tobacco.