GILGIT: Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) government on Thursday presented an annual budget of over Rs63.64 billion for the fiscal year 2018-19 allocating Rs31.64 billion for non-development and Rs32.26 billion for development schemes.
The budget was presented by Senior Minister Akbar Taban in the G-B Legislative Assembly session chaired by Deputy Speaker Jafarullah Khan. G-B Chief Minister Hafeezur Rehman and opposition lawmakers also attended the budget session.
The overall budget has increased by 11 per cent from Rs54 billion. Finance Minister Akbar Taban said that the Public Sector Development Programme has an outlay of more than Rs7.9 billion. The development budget includes Rs6.59 billion for education.
G-B government has set aside funds for construction of new school buildings, provision of basic necessary facilities including drinking water, walls and provision of furniture and up gradation of schools. The government has also allocated Rs4.23 billion health under which new health centres would be established, hospitals and basic health centres would receive machinery, medicines and other necessary facilities. Similarly, Rs41 million has been allocated for forests. For minerals, the government has earmarked Rs40.82 million and Rs4 billion have been allocated for finance department.
With GB continuing to face an energy crisis, Finance Minister said that Rs2.73 billion has been allocated for power generation. He said that Rs90.80 million have been allocated for agriculture and livestock. The government allocated Rs19.42 million for the food Department.
The federal government had allocated Rs7.9 billion for various ongoing and new schemes in G-B for financial year 2018-19. It divided Rs17 billion block allocations in 10 districts of G-B on population basis. The distribution ratio is stands at Gilgit 17 per cent, Skardu 15 per cent, Diamer 15 per cent, Ghezer 14 per cent, Ganchay 10 per cent, Astore eight per cent, Nagar six per cent Shegar five per cent and Kharmang five per cent. Moreover, 10 per cent adhoc relief has been increased in the salary of government employees and petitioners while their house rent allowances has been increased by 50 per cent