ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed to reduce non-development spending and increase development expenditure in the upcoming budget. He was chairing a high level meeting in Islamabad today (Sunday) on the proposed budget of the Federal government, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for the financial year 2020-21. Keeping in view the ground realities regarding revenue and expenditure, Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mehmood Khan’s economic teams briefed the meeting about their respective province’s priorities for the upcoming budget. Addressing the meeting, Prime Minister Imran Khan said the budget for next financial year is being presented in exceptional circumstances due to Corona pandemic. In view of these circumstances, he directed to set priorities especially for those projects and to put into practice those priorities which would create employment opportunities and accelerate the wheel of the economy. The Prime Minister said in large urban areas where the Corona virus outbreak has had a devastating effect, full employment opportunities should be created. In order to meet the national and provincial development needs and ensure the participation of the private sector in development projects, the Prime Minister called for facilitating the private sector for the accomplishment of projects under public-private partnership. The Prime Minister directed the provincial governments to pay special attention to the development of the industrial sector and agriculture. In this regard, the Prime Minister was also given a special briefing on the priorities in the budget for the development of special economic zones and agriculture sector. The Prime Minister directed that following the pattern of Federal government, provincial governments should also pay special attention to reducing unnecessary government expenditure. The Prime Minister directed the provincial governments to pay special attention to the up gradation of the health sector with regard to development projects so that the people could have access to quality healthcare facilities. Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Information Minister Shibli Faraz, Minister for Industry Hamad Azhar, Planning Minister Asad Umar, Advisors Dr. Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Abdul Razzaq Dawood, Dr. Ishrat Hussain and Syed Zulfiqar Abbas Bukhari were also present in the meeting.
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