ISLAMABAD: The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has approved a Rs 17 billion grant to finance parliamentarians schemes.
Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar virtually presided over the meeting of the ECC of the Cabinet.
The Cabinet division informed the ECC that the federal government is running a community based “sustainable Development Goals Achievement Programs (SAP) in line with the UN conventions to achieve the SDGs, addressing the urban/rural infrastructure and social development constraints across the country.
A steering committee on SAP had also been notified on June 13, 2022 with the approval of the federal cabinet.
It is pertinent to note that the government has allocated Rs70 billion under SDG in budget 2022-23 and these funds will be released on the recommendations of SAP steering committee to the concerned federal ministries/divisions and provincial governments for execution of development schemes as per guidelines approved by cabinet.
Sources said that committee on October 12, 2022 discussed that there were a number of schemes of the deprived areas yet to be finalized under the SAP and there were requirements of additional allocation of funds.
Federal planning minister informed that the additional funds to the tune of Rs17 billion could be arranged by the committee and the steering committee directed the planning commission to surrender Rs1 billion for 2022-23 in favour of cabinet division to finance schemes of areas deprived so far.
Subsequently, the ECC approved additional funds as TSG amounting to Rs 17 billion during current financial year 2022-23 under the SAP to finance the urban/rural infrastructure and social development schemes for areas deprived so far across the country.
Rs 3.2 billion grant for procurement and distribution of wheat seed
Meanwhile, the ECC also approved a Technical supplementary Grant of Rs 3.2 billion in favour of MNFS&R and subsequent transfer to NDMA for procurement and distribution of wheat seed to support flood affected farmers in view of the heavy damages to the Agriculture sector.
Additional funds to the tune of Rs. 3.4 billion will also be made available to the Ministry of National Food Security & research subsequently. 50% of funds would be provided by the Federal Government and 50% by provincial governments, according to the Finance ministry.
7th population and housing census
Besides, the ECC deferred the summary of M/o PD&SI for conduct of the 7th Population and Housing Census.
It is pertinent to note that the Council of common Interests (CCI) in its meeting approved the final results of 6 population and Housing census 2017 and the CCI also decided that the process of the next census should start as early as possible according to international best practices by using the latest technology.
In compliance of the said decision of CCI, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics started preparatory work to conduct first ever digital population and housing census and minister for planning constituted a census advisory committee comprising of renowned demographers and experts to devise recommendations for adoption of international best practices by using latest technology for the 7th population and housing census.
The committee recommended to carry out the census “digitally” with real time monitoring and geo-tagging of all structures at block level.
The activities for conducting the 7th population and housing census are in full swing and the pilot census has been completed on August 3, 2022.
Sources said that the department has asked Rs5 billion for conduct of 7th population and housing census.