Budget breaks no new ground: Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri

Commenting on the recently announced budget for next financial year 2010-11, Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, president of MQI’s Federal Council who is currently pursuing his PhD in Economics from Australia, has said that budget does indicate the fiscal problems facing the nation but has failed to offer any solutions for them. He said that this year’s budget is traditional in nature and has not broken any new ground. He added that no roadmap has been laid down in the document for the revival of business and industry, which continue to suffer.

Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri said that energy crisis warranted immediate response and budgetary allocation should have been made to get rid of the problem but it falls short of doing the needful. He, however, praised the government’s decision to raise the salaries of the government employees, saying that skyrocketing inflation had made it difficult for public sector employees to make their both ends meet. He demanded of the government to link cash rewards with performance and underlined the need of working out a credible performance audit criterion in that regard.

Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri said that it was unfortunate that expected revenue receipts from domestic taxation system by the Federal Board of Revenue were far less than what must have been the case to cater to the expenditure side. He deplored the fact that no government overhauled the taxation system as it continued to rely on indirect taxes much to the detriment of the common man. He said that our tax to GDP ratio was close to 9%, which was the main factor responsible for revenue generation. He said that the governments lacked political will to broaden the tax base by bringing the big land lords in the tax net. Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri asked the government authorities how would they be able to find resources if expected aid from Kerry Lugar Bill did not come due to change in the international circumstances. ‘Would we go back to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) again after entering into costly Structural Adjustment and Stabilization Program with the Fund?” he asked.

Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri urged the federal government to cut down the non-development expenditure and reduce the size of the government to save maximum of the resources. ‘There is great duplication of work being done both at federal and provincial levels. The government size should be reduced drastically after the passage of the 18th Constitutional Amendment as Concurrent List stands abolished,” he opined.