ISLAMABAD: The state-owned mailing company - Pakistan Post continues to suffer huge losses due to increased gap between revenue and expenditure.
Addressing the National Assembly Standing Committee on Postal Services session at the parliament house here on Monday with Haji Imtiaz Ahmed Chaudhry in chair, Secretary Postal Services Pir Baksh Jamali said that the losses incurred by Pakistan Post are not in control and the deficit would further increase with a rise in salaries and pension.
Pakistan Post officials said that the budget of the department was Rs18 billion while the expected expenditures were Rs24 billion. 71 percent of the budget was used for paying salaries and pensions. Rs7.5 billion were paid as pensions.
It was told that Pakistan Post pays pension to its employees from its budget while the pension of other departments was paid by the government. The officials said if the government paid the pension like it does for other departments, then the deficit of the department would be met.
The committee assured the Ministry of Postal Services of full cooperation and also commended it for providing services in faraway areas of the country with minimum resources.
The Ministry of Postal Services in its briefing to the committee informed that Pakistan Post had 47,348 employees and was still facing a shortage of 3,739 employees.
345 night post offices were working from 3 pm to 9 pm and the customers were charged under the saving account. Revenue of Rs2 billion annually was obtained from the saving bank. More than 1.6 million officials of army and navy along with other officials were paid pension by the Pakistan Post.
The Pakistan Post officials informed that revenue of Rs429.9 million was earned from utility bills collection in 2017-18. Rs8 per bill was charged for bill collection upon which member committee Raja Riaz suggested that an increase of Rs8 be made in the commission of bill collection.
The session learnt that during the current financial year, revenue of Rs10 billion was earned. Financial bid of two companies for Pakistan Post logistics services had been sent to the public-private partnership and the body was working on it.
It was also told that due to the austerity drive of the government, the rebranding of the project could not be worked upon. A project of Rs371 million for the improvement of the post offices had been approved but the amount was withdrawn after cut in Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP).
The officials said that their ministry does not have a place in secretariat and demanded that the Ministry of Postal Services be given a place for office in Pakistan Secretariat.
They also informed that 1.3 million pensioners were drawing pension from the department but only the Central Directorate of National Savings (CDNS) had the permission for welfare and pension accounts. An order for 500 biometric machines to verify biometric in Benazir Income Support Program has been placed.
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