PM calls for political stability to improve economy

Cabinet approves federal budget n PM says govt making earnest efforts to speed up national development

ISLAMABAD   -  The federal cabinet yes­terday approved the federal budget for the financial year 2023-24.

Finance Minister Ish­aq Dar briefed the cab­inet, which met with Prime Minister Sheh­baz Sharif in the chair here, about the salient features of the budget. 

Credible sources told The Nation that conflict arose between Paki­stan People’s Party and PML-N on the issue of percentage of increase in the salaries of gov­ernment employees.

The sources said the government had ini­tially proposed 20 per cent increase, howev­er, PPP wanted 40 per cent increase which the finance minister said would be a huge burden on the national treasury. 

Finally, the finance minister agreed on 35 per cent for grade 1 to 16 employees and 30 per cent for grade 17 to 22 officers as ad hoc relief. 

Addressing the cabi­net meeting, the prime minister said the gov­ernment is working with earnest devotion to bring political stability in order to put the economy on upward trajectory.

He regretted that a sustained effort has been made by some ele­ments over the last one year or so to stoke po­litical instability. 

He said this have had a disastrous im­pact on the economy. He stressed that politi­cal stability is a must to put the economy in the right direction.

As regards the bud­get, the prime minister said that comprehen­sive consultations have been held with all the stakeholders on it.

He said that by focus­ing on the agriculture sector, we can yield posi­tive results in the minimum time. He stressed for estab­lishing agricultural value chain to enhance exports and bring prosperity in the lives of rural population. Similar­ly, he said, we have to focus on enhancing IT exports. The prime minister said the gov­ernment is cognizant of the problems faced by the com­mon man due to inflation. He said we have to take care of the salaried class as well as the pensioners so that they could meet their basic re­quirements. He said it is a matter of satisfaction that the country has managed to bring down the current ac­count deficit to 3.3 billion dollars regardless of internal and external challenges. The PM was confident that since Pakistan has fulfilled all the conditions, the IMF board will approve the next tranche after completion of the ninth review this month.

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