Subsidy allocation jacked up by 18.4% to Rs174.7 billion

ISLAMABAD: The government on Friday increased the subsidy allocation by 18.4% as it presented the last budget of its tenure for next fiscal year 2018-19, which would provide some relief for the consumers of energy and commodities and may help the ruling party in winning over voters in the next general elections.

According to the budget documents, Rs134 billion has been set aside for subsidising power companies, excluding K-Electric.

Of this, Rs105 billion will cover tariff differential claims of power distribution companies whereas Rs12 billion will be utilised to pick up receivables of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) compared to Rs10 billion in the current fiscal year.

For the outgoing year, Rs102 billion had been earmarked for the tariff differential claims, but actual disbursements came down to Rs81.5 billion.

Separately, Rs5 billion has been set aside for subsidising agricultural tube wells in Balochistan next year. In comparison, Rs8.5 billion had been allocated for the outgoing year.

Wapda will get a subsidy of Rs12 billion in FY19 whereas for K-Electric the subsidy amount has been slashed to Rs15.4 billion.

Published in The Express Tribune, 28th April, 2018