Sindh inks accord with WB regarding reform project

Karachi: Sindh Finance Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah here Wednesday told the cabinet that in order to mobilize our own resources and to improve public financial management Sindh has entered into an agreement with World Bank and initiated Sindh Public Sector Management Reform Project’ .

Under the project preparation of budget strategy paper `Transparency in budget formulation, allocation and execution’ would be achieved.

He said that finance department in coordination with Planning & Development Department has prepared Budget Strategy Paper 2015-16. The main contours of the papers include government policies, priorities, strategic allocations of resources and key macro-economic assumptions over the medium term framework.

He said that the net actual receipts for 2012-13 and 2013-14 remained at Rs469.42 billion and Rs510 billion respectively as against budget estimates of Rs570.8 billion and Rs595.5 billion showing variance of 17.76 percent in 2012-13 and 14.37 percent in 2013-14. The variation is attributed to shortfall in federal transfers, provincial own receipts, federal development grants and foreign assisted projects.

Murad Ali Shah added that the sluggish economic growth rate, inefficiencies in tax administration and tax collection, ban on disposal of government land and delay in execution of donor funded projects were mainly responsible for less than target receipts of province.

The finance minister said that the revenue transfers from federal divisible pool, straight transfer and grants constituted 80 percent of total provincial current revenue receipts in 2012-13 and 82 percent in 2013-14. The revised estimates of revenue transfers from federal divisible pool, straight transfer and grants for current financial year amount to 81 percent of provincial current revenue estimates as against budget estimates of 79 percent.

He said that the provincial government is trying to reduce dependence on federal receipts with focus on own resource generation effort through Sindh Tax Revenue Mobilisation Plan with aim to reduce share of federal transfers from 81 percent at present to 78.7 percent in year 2017-18.