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NEC likely to set 6pc growth target

NEC likely to set 6pc growth target




ZAHEER ABBASI

ISLAMABAD: National Economic Council (NEC) is expected today (Friday) to fix the GDP growth target at 6 per cent for the next fiscal year on the basis of 6.4 per cent growth of manufacturing and services sectors each and 3.5 per cent growth of agriculture sector.

Sources in the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform said that according to a presentation prepared for the NEC, all the major economic targets GDP growth, exports, fiscal deficit and current account balance in the current fiscal year have been missed.

Provisional estimates suggest 5.3 per cent growth for the current fiscal year, 0.4 per cent lower from 5.7 per cent target set in the budget for the current fiscal year, exports are estimated at $ 21.7 billion against $ 24.8 billion budgetary target and account deficit at 2.7 per cent of GDP against 1.7 per cent for the current fiscal year.

A projection of 6 per cent growth for the next fiscal year (2017-18) is projected on the basis of 3.5 per cent growth of agriculture sector with 2 per cent growth of important crops and 3.8 per cent of livestock.

The growth of manufacturing sector for the next fiscal year has been projected at 6.4 per cent with 6.3 per cent in Large Scale Manufacturing sector. Services sector growth would be fixed at 6.4 per cent for the next fiscal year by the NEC.

The NEC would also be proposed to approve public sector development outlay of Rs 2.133 trillion for the next fiscal year. Sources said the meeting would be stated that the proposed development budget has been prepared in line with overall agenda for achieving higher, sustainable and inclusive growth, reducing poverty, investing in human capital, improving infrastructure while ensuring balanced development and ensuring food, water and energy security.

The Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform has requested the Finance Division to enhance the size of development budget to at least Rs 1,150 billion against the indicated ceiling of Rs 700 billion and finally Rs 1,001 billion development budget was agreed by Finance Davison. The Annual Plan Coordination Committee (APCC) has recommended to NEC for consideration and approval of National Development outlay at Rs 2,113 billion.

Of the total Rs 2113 billion, PSDP for the next fiscal year includes local component of federal PSDP of Rs 833 billion and foreign aid component of Rs 168 billion. Local component of provincial PSDP is Rs 917 billion and foreign aid component is Rs 363 billion.

The meeting would also be submitted progress report of Central Development Working Party (CDWP) and ECNEC forums to approve development projects for one year period from April 2016 to March 2017.



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