Finance minister presents two year dept performance to CM

LAHORE:Punjab Finance Minister Hashim Jawan Bakht on Tuesday presented two year performance report of the department to Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar here at his office.

The Chief Minister appreciated the performance of the finance department and directed that austerity policy should be strictly implemented along with observance of financial discipline and a further cut in unnecessary expenditures be ensured.

Usman Buzdar said that the finance department adopted an effective strategy to deal with the coronavirus challenge and ensured funds for development projects along with provision of additional resources to the Health department to deal with the virus.

He said that a tax relief package worth more than Rs. 56.5 billion was given to stabilize the economy, adding

that billions of rupees were provided to the coronavirus affectees under Insaf Imdad Programme and tax ratio on more than 20 services were decreased from 16 percent to 5 percent.

The chief minister said that the stamp duty ratio was decreased from 5 percent to 1 percent in urban localities and online payment of more than 12 government taxes was ensured through e-Punjab mobile/internet application.

He said that a provisional provincial finance commission had been constituted and the government was implementing new programmes to ease out the lives of the common man.

The CM stressed that relieving the indigent strata of the economic burden through Ehsas Punjab Programme was the mission of the government and it had also initiated a unique programme to create ease of doing business.

The Finance Minister said on the occasion that additional funds’ requests worth Rs.14.5 billion had been rejected by the cabinet standing committee for finance and development while the finance department rejected requests worth Rs.75.58 billion during the two years.

He said that 75 new branches of the Punjab Bank have been opened, adding that the bank of Punjab earned Rs 12 billion profit in 2018 while Rs 14 billion profit was earned in 2019 which was the highest profit of the bank. On the other side, administrative matters of public sector companies have been rectified, he added.

The minister said that the financial audit had been conducted and business plans were also designed to increase their resources.