ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar has informed the National Assembly Committee on Finance that inflation during the first seven months (July to January) current fiscal year increased up to 6.21 percent against 3.85 percent in the same period of last year and external account remained under pressure despite recovery in exports and remittances.
The meeting of the Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs of the National Assembly was held in Parliament House under the chairmanship of Faiz Ullah, MNA.
Minister of State for Revenue Muhammad Hammad Azhar, briefed the committee on the current situation of economy in the country. He said that numerous economic challenges were faced at the start of current fiscal year, which required adjustment to correct the imbalances in the economy.
He further explained about the large scale manufacturing growth of -1.53% in July—December financial year 2019 compared to the growth of 6.6% during the last year. He informed the committee that during first seven months of current fiscal year, remittances have been increased by 12.2 percent which also helped in containment of current account deficit. He also informed that the government is improving the investment climate to attract the foreign investment in the country.
While considering the “Microfinance Institutions (Amendment) Bill, 2019” moved by Ms. Sajid Begum, MNA, she briefed the committee about the salient features of the bill.
She said that to protect the freedoms and rights of disabled persons and to eliminate discrimination against disabled person in all forums, she has decided to introduce the said bill.
After discussion, the committee directed to State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for proper working on the bill with consultation of the mover. The Ex-Chairman of the Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs appreciated the professional aptitude of the State Minister in this regard. The Committee considered the Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) project of 2019-20 of Finance Division (Main) one by one and recommended for further necessary action as required under rule 201 (7) of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly, 2007.
The Secretary, Economic Affairs Division (EAD) briefed the Committee about the organizational structure and working of the Division. He said that EAD was responsible for assessment of requirements, programming and negotiations of external economic and technical assistance from foreign government and multilateral agencies, etc. After detailed briefing the Committee recommended to EAD that Parliamentarians should also be considered for foreign training.
The meeting was attended by MNAs Makhdoom Syed Sami-ul-Hassan Gillani, Sardar Nasrullah Khan Dareshak, Mr. Jamil Ahmed Khan, Mr. Faheem Khan, Ms. Nusrat Wahid, Mr. Muhammad Israr Tareen, Mr. Ahsan Iqbal Chaudhary, Mr. Qaiser Ahmed Sheikh, Ali Pervaiz, Dr. Aisha Ghaus Pasha, Ms. Nafisa Shah, Syed Naveed Qamar, Ms. Hina Rabbani Khar besides the senior officers of Ministry of Finance, Revenue, Economic Affairs, Ministry of Planning, Development & Reforms, Ministry of Law & Justice and SBP.