Issue 44

Budget Study Centre   Issue 44
July 11, 2019


Fortnightly Budget News Alerts

PM seeks businessmen’s support to revive economy

The Pakistan Today (July 11, 2019)

KARACHI: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday assured the business community that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government was committed to the ease of doing business in the country and urged them to help achieve its economic targets by becoming a part of the tax net. The prime minister held a series of meetings with different delegations of Karachi-based business… Read More

Budget measures slow down realty sector

The Express Tribune (July 11, 2019)

LAHORE: The federal budget for the fiscal year 2019-20 has dragged the realty sector of Pakistan into a depressing mode, at least for now. Markets are eagerly anticipating the revised rates of land, to be announced by the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), which will determine the future of this sector following response from investors. In the budget, the government abolished 3% tax, which… Read More

Pakistan receives &991m as first tranche of IMF loan

The Pakistan Today (July 10, 2019)

KARACHI: Pakistan has received the first tranche of $991.4 million of the $6 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under its Extended Fund Facility (EFF), the chief spokesperson for the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) confirmed on Wednesday. On July 3, the IMF executive board approved a $6 billion bailout package for Pakistan and immediately released $1 billion to ease a sustained… Read More

FBR falls Rs 556bn short of revenue target

The Pakistan Today (July 10, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government, in its first year in power, has failed miserably in achieving the revenue target of Rs4.39 trillion. The Federal Board of Revenue collected Rs3.84 trillion in the fiscal year 2018-19, depicting a shortfall of Rs556 billion. As per the sources, the tax department actually collected Rs3.8 trillion in taxes, while it included Rs42 billion, which was collected through… Read More

Pakistan facing ‘significant economic challenges’ economy at critical juncture, says IMF

The Financial Express (July 09, 2019)

The global lender last week formally approved the USD 6 billion loan to Pakistan, which is facing “significant” economic challenges on the back of “large” fiscal and financial needs and “weak and unbalanced” growth. Pakistan is facing “significant economic challenges” due to a weak and unbalanced growth and that its economy is at a critical juncture where it needs an ambitious and bold set of reforms… Read More

IMF says Pakistan bailout sets ambitious fiscal targets

The Business Recorder (July 09, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The $6 billion loan package for Pakistan approved by the International Monetary Fund last week will require “very ambitious” fiscal measures and sustained commitment for the bailout to succeed, IMF officials said on Monday. The three-year agreement approved by the IMF board last week, Pakistan’s 13th bailout since the late 1980s, has seen a sharp drop in the value of the rupee… Read More

Budget shows govt’s agenda to make India a product-driven country (July 08, 2019)

The Union Budget 2019, presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, is one of the most critical ones in the recent past for ‘Start-up India, Standup India’, a dream initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. This Budget clearly portrays the importance laid by the Modi government to turn India into a product-driven country. The Budget held a wide variety of initiatives to… Read More

Depressing economy of Pakistan and its revival

The Nation by Muhammad Ishan Khan (July 08, 2019)

Pakistan is a developing country and faces a host of socio-economic problems including political instability as a major burning current issue that aggregates the problems further. Currently, one of the big social problems for Pakistan is poverty. 70% of the population of Pakistan still lives in villages and agriculture encompassing livestock sector, is a major source of economic development… Read More

Mixed reactions to new Indian finance minister’s budget

The National (July 07, 2019)

Most business leaders and economists welcomed what is seen as a “pragmatic” annual budget from India’s re-elected government led by Narendra Modi. But it fell short of the “big bang” announcements some were hoping for. The budget was presented by India’s new Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday against the backdrop of a slowing economy and high unemployment. The government… Read More

Workers, activists denounce federal budget, demand better wages, pensions

The Dawn (July 07, 2019)

KARACHI: People from all walks of life, including labourers, home-based workers and rights activists, observed a ‘black day’ by holding a rally from Regal Chowk to the Karachi Press Club on Saturday against the terrible price hike. Chanting slogans, they also voiced their agony about not getting water, electricity and gas despite paying the bills through their noses. The rally, organised … Read More

Institutions must be strengthened to achieve budget targets

The News (July 06, 2019)

LAHORE: Budget targets are no doubt ambitious, but to expect these targets can be achieved through weak institutions is overly ambitious. Strong institutions are vital in implementing the policies of the state in letter and spirit. Pakistan has never embarked on a sustainable growth path despite having a liberalised trade regime in the region mainly due to weak institutions. To achieve its revenue targets … Read More

Budget aims to promote industrialization, FBR chief tells traders

The Pakistan Today (July 06, 2019)

LAHORE: Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman Shabbar Zaidi, while addressing a meeting at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Saturday, said that the main theme of the Federal Budget 2019-20 is the development of industrial sector and creation of employment opportunities. “Keeping in view the problems … Read More

India budget 2019: The key announcements and what they mean

BBC News (July 05, 2019)

India’s first full-time female finance minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, has presented her maiden annual budget. The BBC’s Aakriti Thapar explains what the major announcements were and what they mean for India. This is the first budget since Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s landslide victory in the general election this year. There were big expectations because it came against the backdrop of … Read More

Pakistan in Economic Danger

The Daily Times by Shahabuddin (July 05, 2019)

The PM of Pakistan has created the Economic Council to find solutions to the tremendous debt Pakistan has accumulated over its life, especially during the last ten years of democratic governments. The total debt as of 2018 was Rs. 33 trillion ($201 billion at the current exchange rate) of which Rs. 3.4 trillion was borrowed in just the last six months. The total debt is 86.4% of the GDP and 36% of the … Read More

IMF approves $6bn Pakistan bailout package after austerity budget

The Financial Times (July 04, 2019)

Please use the sharing tools found via the share button at the top or side of articles. Copying articles to share with others is a breach of T&Cs and Copyright Policy. Email to buy additional rights. Subscribers may share up to 10 or 20 articles per month using the gift article service. More information can be found here. The IMF has approved a $6bn bailout package for Pakistan … Read More

Workers criticize federal budget, to observe ‘black day’ on Saturday

The Dawn (July 04, 2019)

KARACHI: Rights activists representing labourers, peasants and fisherfolk called a press conference at the Karachi Press Club on Wednesday to reject the recent budget and announce a ‘black day’ to be observed by them on July 6 (Saturday). Calling it an anti-people budget prepared by the government with an understanding with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the … Read More

Pakistan and IMF battling economic plight together?

The Global Village Space by Bilal Abdul Ghani (July 03, 2019)

After taking control of the government, PTI is trying its best to control the economic conditions of the country. Starting from the amnesty drive to the IMF Program, the incumbency has taken every bitter step to revive the economy that is lying on the ventilator taking raspy breaths. How much of these steps are true and in right direction? Only the future can tell. Here is a … Read More

Inflation surges to 5-year high target missed

The Express Tribune (July 03, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government has missed its annual target of inflation that surged to a five-year high at 7.3% in the last fiscal year due to upward revision in electricity and gas prices and 32% depreciation of the rupee in one year. Against the annual target of 6%, the average inflation in fiscal year 2018-19 surged to 7.34%, reported the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics , … Read More

Tax rate for token payment, registration of cars not changed in budget: FBR

The Business Recorder (July 02, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Tuesday strongly rebutted the perception that rate of tax had been changed in the Financial Budget-2019 for the token payment and registration of cars. After verification it was noticed that this misperception was due to a typographical mistake which was rectified in the Finance Act-2019, a press release by FBR said. It added the rate of tax for the … Read More

IMF executive board meets Wednesday to decide on Pakistan bailout

The Pakistan Today (July 02, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its Washington meeting on Wednesday (today) will decide about approval of the bailout package to Pakistan. Pakistan’s government and the IMF had already signed staff agreement on May 12. The Executive Board of the IMF will give its final nod to the agreement under which Pakistan will receive six billion dollars… Read More

Human development gets little attention in budget

The Express Tribune (July 01, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: In his recent address to the Karachi Council on Foreign Relations, Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh noted that “historically, Pakistan has never been able to perform well economically”. He then went on to explain the three common factors, which enabled 15 to 20 developing countries to gain prosperity since the Second World War. These included focusing on their people … Read More

IMF programme may do little to reduce trade deficit

The Express Tribune (July 01, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: Following a staff-level agreement and subject to approval of its board of directors, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will provide $6 billion in credit to Pakistan under a 39-month Extended Fund Facility (EFF).
Opinion is divided over whether Pakistan should have gone back to the fund and whether the agreement with the multilateral donor will compound or … Read More

No relief for poor in budget

The News (June 30, 2019)

CHARSADDA: Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) Chairman Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao on Saturday declared the budget controversial, saying the government didn’t give any relief to the people. He was addressing the participants of a rally at the Farooq Azam Chowk here. The rally was held to protest the spiraling price-hike and ill-conceived policies of the government. A large number of QWP workers, … Read More

Pakistan to share details of federal budget with IMF board

The Gulf Today (June 30, 2019)

Pakistan will share the details of the federal budget with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) board, which is scheduled to meet on July 3, after its passage in the National Assembly. The final budget measures along with a report on compliance with all prior actions will be key elements in the board’s decision to grant Pakistan’s request for accession to a $6 billion bailout facility. The final, approved… Read More

Punjab Assembly passes budget amid rumpus by both opposition, treasury benches

The Dawn (June 29, 2019) 

LAHORE: The opposition on Friday made up for what it lacked on Tuesday (when the provincial budget was passed): resisting the passage of supplementary budget, with an hour-long noisy protest – as long as the speaker read all 40 demands for grants under the bill. As soon as the speaker started reading the bill, grant by grant, the House lost all sense of decorum. The entire opposition … Read More

PTI survives budget scare

The Pakistan Today (June 29, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government was able to get its finance bill passed in the National Assembly on Thursday after a majority voted in its favour despite attempts by the joint opposition to thwart the bill. The total outlay of the budget was Rs7.022 trillion, focusing on fiscal consolidation, revenue mobilisation, austerity … Read More


Budget 2019-20 will prove disastrous for middle-income groups:moot

The Pakistan Today (June 28, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Budget 2019-2020, as well as the government’s economic policies, will have disastrous consequences for Pakistan’s middle-income groups, who are expected to face a 40pc compression in disposable income. This was the key takeaway at the Jinnah Institute’s policy roundtable, titled, ‘Austerity Budget: Assessing the Impact on Development and Pro-poor Growth’…. Read More


Economists weigh on Pakistan’s economic crisis, new budget

The News (June 28, 2019)

Karachi: The Institute of Historical and Social Research held a seminar titled ‘Present Economic Crisis and the Budget 2019-20’ at the Zaki Hasan Auditorium, Jinnah Medical and Dental College, Karachi. Dr. Riaz Ahmed Shaikh, Dr. Syed Jaffar Ahmad, Mr. Karamat Ali and Dr. S Akbar Zaidi were the speakers who reflected on current economic crisis in Pakistan, how it should … Read More