The National Assembly adjourned its session on Friday without voting on the Proposed finance bill after a brief debate on the budget proposals.
“The NA session has been adjourned to meet again on Monday, the 20th February 2023 by 5:00 pm,” announced on the official Twitter handle of the lower house.
Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar tabled the Finance (Supplementary) Bill 2023 in both houses on Wednesday in a bid to generate Rs170 billion in revenue.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, while speaking to reporters after the session, said that he expects the bill to be passed in both houses by Monday or Tuesday as Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani has “given us till Friday”.
Earlier Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar introduced the Finance Bill (Supplementary) the “mini-budget” in the National Assembly in order to meet IMF Conditions for the approval of the loan program needed to avoid a default.
While addressing the Parliament, the finance minister compared the performance of the previous PML-N and PTI governments.
The finance minister also announces to increase General Sales Tax GST rate from 17 to 18% and increasing the Federal Excise Duty (FED) on cigarettes and Tobacco in order to fetch an additional Rs115 billion out of Rs170 billion agreed to by Pakistan in line with the IMF conditions.
- Govt has increased GST on luxury items from 17% to 25%
- Increase in federal excise duty on cigarettes and fizzy drinks.
- Increase in federal excise duty on cement
- GST has been increased from 17pc to 18pc
- Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) handouts increased to Rs400bn from Rs360bn
- FDE on business and first-class air tickets to now be Rs20,000 or 50% — whichever is higher
- GST is to not be imposed on essential goods.
Credible Sources at the Ministry of Finance told that they expect the bill to be ascended by Thursday morning, which will pave the way not only for the IMF monies but funds from multi-laterals and bilateral.
According to the latest details, A session of the Senate has also been summoned to move the bill to the upper house. After the passage of the finance bill from both houses, the bill will be then sent to President Arif Alvi for approval.
IMF Virtual Talks
Virtual talks between the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Pakistan for the completion of the ninth review of the $7 billion loan program began a day earlier before presenting Finance Bill.
The officials of the finance ministry would brief the IMF about the implementation of the conditions set by them for the revival of the loan program. it was reported that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Pakistan moved closer to the revival of the $7 billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF) as the IMF responded to the Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies (MEFP) draft and soon the revival of $7 billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF) will be completed.