Dev budget worth Tk 1.5tr endorsed

UNB . Dhaka | Update:

The National Economic Council (NEC) on Sunday approved a Tk 153,331.25 crore (Tk 1.53 trillion) annual development programme (ADP) for the next fiscal year (2017-18).

In what is also called development budget, the highest allocation of Tk 18,845.27 crore (Tk 188.45 billion) has been made for the local government division.

"The NEC today approved a record original ADP of Tk 153,331.25 crore for the next fiscal year (FY18) although the demand is still higher," planning minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said at a media briefing after the day's NEC meeting held at the NEC conference room in the city's Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area.

NEC chairperson and prime minister Sheikh Hasina chaired the meeting.

The planning minister, however, said the overall size of the ADP, including that of the organisations' self-financed projects, reached Tk 164,084.83 crore (Tk 1.64 trillion).

Out of the original ADP size, Tk 96,331 crore will come from the local sources while the rest of Tk 57,000 crore from the foreign sources in the form of project assistance.

Kamal said there is nothing to be worried about the overall ADP size as the GDP outlay as well as the national budget size also increased over the years citing that the ADP size was only Tk 21,500 crore eight years back.

Answering to a question, he said the country's economy is yet to get in to the take-off stage, adding, "Still there're lots of components through which we can reach the stage."

The planning minister went on saying, "We don't want to go into a flourishing stage speedily. Rather, we want to go gradually."

Officials at the Planning Commission said the transport infrastructure sector got the highest priority in the new ADP considering the implementation of the Padma Bridge project and Padma Bridge rail link project.

Out of the mega projects, the much-hyped Padma Multipurpose Bridge project got an ADP allocation of Tk 5,524.36 crore in the next fiscal year followed by the Padma Bridge railway link project with an allocation of Tk 7,609.81 crore, construction of tunnel beneath the Karnaphuli River with Tk 1,573.97 crore, Dhaka Mass Rapid Transit Development project with an ADP allocation of Tk 3,425.83 crore.

Another official at the commission said as per the sector-wise allocation, the Power Sector got the 2nd highest allocation with an outlay of Tk 18,858.83 crore which is also 12 percent of the original ADP allocation followed by Tk 16,673 crore in the education sector which is also 10.87 percent of the original ADP allocation.

Physical planning, water supply and housing sector got an allocation of Tk 14,949.72 crore which is also 9 per cent of the original ADP followed by around Tk 14,450 crore in the science and technology sector.

Besides, the rural development and rural institution sector received around Tk 13,154.84 crore (8 per cent of original ADP) in a bid to infuse dynamism in the rural economy and create massive employment opportunities while the health sector witnessed Tk 10,201 crore allocation which is also 6.65 percent of the overall ADP allocation. The agriculture sector got Tk 6,006 crore allocation in the new ADP, which is 3.92 percent of the overall ADP allocation.

Considering the ministry and division-wise allocation after the Local Government Division, the Power Division got the 2nd highest allocation of Tk 18,845 crore followed by Tk 16,820 crore for the roads and highways division.

The railways ministry got an allocation of Tk 13,001 crore followed by Tk 10,602 crore for the science and technology ministry, health and family welfare ministry with an original ADP allocation of Tk 9,511 crore, the primary and mass education ministry got Tk 8,751 crore, the Bridges Division got Tk 8,403 crore, the secondary and higher education division got Tk 6,164 crore while the water resources ministry got Tk 4,675 crore.

Some 90 new projects have been included with allocation in the new ADP, thus raising the total number of projects to 1,195.

Out of these, the total number of investment projects is 1079 while the number of technical assistance projects is 112 and some four projects will be financed from the Japan Debt Cancellation Fund (JDCF). Besides, some 36 projects have been kept for completion under the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) initiative.

Besides, some 411 projects have been kept for completion in the next fiscal year of which some 378 projects are investment projects.

The original overall ADP size, including that of self-financed projects, for the outgoing fiscal year was Tk 1,23,345.80 crore.

But, the original ADP allocation reached Tk 110,700 crore excluding the self-financed projects.

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