21 - Jun 03, 2001
4.5% a year growth rate target envisaged
The government intends to achieve a growth rate of 4.5 per
cent a year for next three years and wants to narrow down the fiscal deficit to
3.5 per cent in 2004 from 5.3 per cent.
In a three-year plan, (01-02, 02-03 and 03-04), circulated
among all the four provinces, the federal government has set for agriculture, a
growth rate target of 3.5 per cent, manufacturing 6.9 per cent and for other
sectors 5.2 per cent a year.
Total revenue generation in the terminal year of the plan
-2004-is pitched at Rs851.9 billion. It includes Rs722.8 billion tax revenue
which is more than 80 per cent of the expected tax collection in the current
Non-tax revenue, too, is expected to increase significantly
to Rs129 billion.
The plan has set a target of revenue increase to 18.5 per
cent of the GDP in 2004 from 16.3 per cent of the GDP at present. Current
expenditure is also expected to come down from 18.6 per cent of the GDP to 17.8
per cent of the GDP. In real terms current expenditure is targeted at Rs818.5
billion in 2004.
However, the size of the development outlay is set to
increase to 4.2 per cent of the GDP from 3.2 per cent at present. If everything
goes according to the plan, the federal planners hope to prepare a development
outlay of Rs 198.4 billion in 2004.
National savings ratio is expected to touch 15.4 per cent
mark in 2004 when the government expects a total fixed investment of Rs762.5
billion. Greater investment-Rs572.1 billion - is likely to come from private
sector while public sector investment is estimated at Rs190.4 billion.
Narrowing down of the current account to 1.1 per cent of the
GDP and building up foreign exchange reserves is one of the key targets of the
three-year plan, which anticipates 800 million dollars imbalance after exports
have fetched 10.75 billion dollars, import bill amounts to 11.75 billion
dollars, and there is a substantial improvement in the remittances and inflow of
direct foreign investment.
Shaukat sees 8% growth
Federal Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz estimates 8 per cent
growth in the large scale industry in the current fiscal year but has no idea on
the overall economic growth.
"I have not read," quipped the minister on Monday
afternoon when a big group of newsmen drew his attention towards a newspaper
report which quotes him saying in a pre-budget seminar on Sunday at Islamabad
that Pakistan's growth rate in the current fiscal is below three per cent.
The Minister was the chief guest at the award distribution
ceremony for the corporate excellence to the best managed companies in 1999 on
Monday organised by the Management Association of Pakistan (MAP).
After the prize distribution ceremony, Shaukat Aziz responded
to the questions of the waiting newsmen and said that he expects the
International Monetary Fund (IMF) to release the promised third tranche under
Standby Facility agreement on schedule.
Economic growth estimated at 2.55%
Latest estimates put Pakistan's economic growth in the
current fiscal year at 2.55 per cent mainly because of a negative growth of 2.49
per cent in agricultural sector, which has wiped off over 7 per cent growth in
A brief prepared by the Planning Commission for the Annual
Planning Co-ordination Committee meeting to be held on Tuesday at Islamabad
blames the "long spell of drought conditions" for the negative
agricultural growth "presently being assessed at minus 2.5 per cent.
Hardly a month back, to be exact on April 12, the Economic
Advisory Wing of the Finance Ministry has estimated real GDP growth at 3.8 per
cent. Agriculture was reported to negative one while manufacturing sector showed
6 per cent growth. This document was circulated in a pre-budget seminar of
Management Association of Pakistan where the secretary general Finance Moeen
Afzal was the key speaker.
Cotton support price
Chief Executive Gen Pervez Musharraf has asked the ministry
of food and agriculture to present a summary for revision of cotton support
price upward at the next cabinet meeting, official sources told on Wednesday.
The chief executive has also directed the ministry of finance
to allocate Rs1 billion for drilling of 10,000 tubewells in all the four
provinces, the source said.
Lead-free petrol is being introduced in the country from July
next, five years before the deadline set by the World Bank. "The government
has asked us and all the refineries to go ahead with supply of lead-free petrol
(RON-87) without any price change from July next," managing director, Pak
Arab Refinery Limited (Parco), Dr Shahid K. Haq told on Wednesday.
45% units closed
More than 45 per cent - 104 out total 225 - of the industrial
units in the Hub Industrial enclave have either been closed or operating
partially because of tariff anomalies or financial and management problems.
Located in Balochistan province in immediate vicinity of
Karachi, industrial units in Hub offer employment opportunities to a large
number of people of this city.
The closed and sick units were of plastic, printing and
packaging, tractor assembly, paper, pesticides, guar gum, chemical, textile
spinning, food processing, leather garments, confectionery, marble, bicycle,
fruit juice, towel, ghee, steel re-rolling, razor blade and polyester yarn.
Sindh industrial growth on downslide
Tempo of industrial production in Sindh is not keeping pace
with the overall national industrial growth, and has in fact started showing an
alarming downward trend since February last. An official survey covering 465
industrial units in the province, revealed that production went down by 3.72 per
cent in February. Overall production in the first eight months of the current
fiscal year - July 2000 to February 2001 - showed an insignificant growth of
less than one per cent (only 0.83 per cent) in Sindh when national industrial
production growth was 5 per cent plus.