ISLAMABAD: The federal government has decided to initiate a five-year programme 2019-2024 in cooperation with the European Union to ensure rule of law in the country along with good governance, reforms in human rights department and decrease in poverty with a cost of 13 million euros.
The draft between Pakistan and European Union on Public Financial Management Support Programme (PFMSP)-2 two has been agreed and EU has responded to Pakistan.
The finance ministry has sought final advice from the concerned departments and divisions on the reply sent by EU to finalize the agreement.
According to the documents available with The Express Tribune, the finance ministry has sent a letter to the concerned ministries and divisions stating that in view of the comments and advice received by EU, the final draft of the programme has been shared with the economic affairs division and for the purpose, Federal Board of Revenue’s customs and in land revenue departments need to give final opinion.
The FBR has been directed to forward its comments so that the draft can be given final shape for signatures.
Pakistan, EU to ink strategic pact
When the officials of economic affairs division were contacted, they replied that the ministries and divisions along with the FBR and in land revenue department had been asked to submit comments by July 19, which so far have not been received.
However, the FBR officials said that the concerned departments have been sent a copy of the draft and it is expected that by the next week, a report based on the comments and suggestions will be sent to the ministry.
Sources said that the project will cost 13 million euros and the amount will be provided by the EU. The reform programmes will be introduced in Islamabad, Sindh and Balochistan to bring improvement in public financial management.
The draft of the programme said that the manifesto of Pakistan Tehreek-e-government had reduction in poverty, social imbalance and other purposes and through legal reforms, access to services and information, empowering people by making the local governments strong and access of education, health, economic opportunities and legal protection for women included.
Under the programme, a comprehensive process of public financial management reforms will be initiated in Sindh and Balochistan, while at federal level mid-term budgetary framework process will be improved.
According to public financial management reforms for economic progress, improvement in financial system, promoting equality, improving utilization of financial resources, increasing transparency and accountability for better service delivery and strategies will be devised and implemented.
It has been conveyed in the documents that there are three major weaknesses at the federal level, of which, image of the budget tops the list, while an incomplete development budget along with changes in the financial year carried out continuously shows major deviation.
Meanwhile, the finance ministry and the ministry of planning possess a very weak control over the issuance of the budget.
In Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Planning, there are weaknesses in macro forecasting, inappropriate modeling and public investment management planning.
The officials of the economic affairs division expect that during the current month, the draft will be given the final shape and progress will be made on the agreement, while its implementation will also start this year.