Rs50bn indicative budget ceilings approved


ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives (MPD&SI) has approved Rs50 billion Indicative Budget Ceilings (IBC) for the Power Division’s development projects in FY 2023-24, advising the Division to adjust its prioritized projects, well-informed sources in the Planning Commission told Business Recorder.

The Power Division has been asked to finalize the budgetary proposals for PSDP 2023-24 by adhering to following general policy guidelines and rationalization criteria: (i) PAO concerned is required to fully comply with the provisions of the Public Finance Management (PFM) Act, 19 particularly Chapter-I on development projects, guidelines and procedures contained in Financial Management and Powers of PAOs Regulations 2021, Cash Management and Treasury Single Account (CM&TSA) Rules 2020, Budget Manual 2020, instructions contained in the Budget Call Circular by Finance Division on January 25, 2023;(ii) guidelines contained in the PSDP call circular 2023-24 dated 9h February, 2023 issued by M/o PD&SI and provisions in the Manual for Development Projects, December 2021,inter alia, may also be followed in letter and spirit; and (ii) PSDP FY 2023-24 may have special focus on mitigating climate change (green budgeting) specially in context of Pakistan’s C-PIMA and on other initiatives including gender budgeting.

M/o PD&SI has submitted following priorities and guidelines to be followed while submitting project-wise budgetary proposals for PSDP 2023-24 within allotted IBC: (a) as per Chapter I (17) (1) Public Finance Management Act, 2019 no new project which has not been technically approved would be made part of the development budget;(b) to ensure scheduled completion of projects having 80% plus expenditure should be fully-funded which can be completed by June 2024;(c) ongoing core projects of national significance may be assigned top priority for funding as per approved phasing in PC’s in line with Chapter II (17 (2) of PFM Act 2019;(d) consolidation of federal projects should be given top priority over provincial nature projects; (e) Foreign funded fast-moving projects may be provided with required rupee cover to meet international obligations within allotted IBCs; (f) projects supporting CPEC initiative, productivity, exports, IT and S&T (R&D), under SEs and 4RF frameworks, better governance should be assigned importance;(g) PAO shall allocate adequate funds in the FY 2023-24 to clear the pending liabilities of ongoing budgeted projects on priority; (h) procedure to clear the pending liabilities of closed projects approved by Ecnec on April 6, 2023 and notified by this Ministry on May 10, 2023 may be complied with; and (i) projects on innovative financing basis (VGF and PPP) in terms of co-sharing of cost and responsibility for O&M may be considered.

The Power Division has been requested to undertake rationalization of its demand/portfolio while keeping in view the following criteria/instructions: (i) projects may be listed in order of priority within the given IBC while submitting budgetary proposals for both the ongoing and new projects; (ii) on-going projects budgeted during 2022-23 may be listed under the same PSDP No. for financing during 2023-24; (iii) non-performing/non-starter projects since last two years may be reviewed for funding; (iv) un-approved projects should not be included in budgetary proposal; (v) funding of projects/activities of recurring nature/O&M nature should be avoided through PSDP. For such activities, sponsors may approach Finance Division; (vi) foreign aided projects where foreign aid not yet lined up/no disbursement received during last two to three years may be considered for deferment for funding during 2023-24; (vii) no funds shall be kept for any lump provision or unidentified expenditure; (viii)matters related to grant of PSDP funds as Cash Development Loan (CDL), if any, may be settled with Finance Division on priority basis; and (ix) budgetary proposals should be submitted by the Ministry/Sponsor concerned itself in a consolidated form instead of piecemeal from attached departments/PDs.

The Power Division will prepare its development portfolio for 2023-24 adhering to the guidelines and furnish the proposed project-wise allocations, the sources added.