Next budget on June 11: Firdous

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD:  Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan Tuesday said the next budget to be presented on June 11 would focus on moving the economy towards stabilization, reducing fiscal deficit through mobilization of revenue and managing of current account deficit by reducing imports.

Briefing about cabinet decisions here at a press conference, she said expenditure would be brought under control in the upcoming budget setting path for public debt reduction.

Vulnerable sections of society would be protected and top priority would be to reduce financial burden on common people, she added.

Dr Firdous said Advisor to Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh presented before the cabinet outlines of the next budget.

The Special Assistant said further steps would be taken to improve growth prospects and create jobs, adding the provincial governments which through National Finance Commission Award got a major share of resources would be taken on board to tackle the challenges faced on the economic front.

She said ultimately the economic roadmap given by the government stabilized value of rupee against the dollar and put an end to uncertainty and rumours affecting stability of the economy.

Stock exchange had responded positively setting new records, she observed adding the economic measures would ultimately bring down inflation minimizing economic difficulties of the people. She said the government would announce a comprehensive and well defined trade policy to increase exports, reduce imports and balance the trade deficit.

The focus would be on revival of sick industrial units. In the past, interests of industries were not protected under the Free Trade Agreement with China which created a consumer economy that led to expansion in imports, she added.

The Special Assistant said the latest incident in North Waziristan was unfortunate as the miscreants challenged writ of the state by attacking an army check post and a personnel of Frontier Corps was martyred.

The cabinet condemned the incident and expressed solidarity with the injured and prayed for the departed soul, she added.

She said tribesmen had rendered great sacrifices and paid with their lives and now some miscreant elements were putting at stake peace and development of the tribal areas. Prime Minister Imran Khan led efforts for peace in tribal areas and decided to spend Rs 100 billion for development of infrastructure, she added.

She said a conspiracy was hatched and some elements played in the hands of international powers to endanger peace of the area.

The Prime Minister had persuaded the provinces to give three percent  share of their National Finance Commission award to the erstwhile FATA areas, she added. Dr Firdous said the cabinet expressed concern over the misuse of content on Internet and increase in incidents of child molestation.

The Interior Ministry was given responsibility to take steps for stopping the rising incidents of child abuse, she added.