DUBAI: Commenting on the budget former President Asif Ali Zardari has said that while the Party will give its detailed observations both inside and outside the Parliament he felt constrained to remark that the budgetary proposals failed to address critical issues in documenting economy, improving revenue collection, preventing tax evasion, and addressing the growing disparity between the rich and the poor.
Spokesperson Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the former President was disappointed that the financial proposal failed to address some fundamental issues.
It has miserably failed in arresting the alarming downslide of agriculture sector, the growing frustration of government employees and wage earners and in tackling environmental degradation and climate change that are intricately linked to economic development, he quoted the former President as saying.
Worst still, as already pointed out by leading economists, the government has manipulated figures like the GDP growth, tax to GDP ratio, unemployment and inflation rates and fiscal deficit.
Budgetary proposals that are based on manipulated figures and faulty assumptions is fated to accelerate economic downslide and increase frustration, he said.
The Pakistan Bureau of Statistics not being an independent has lent credence to the assertion that figures have been manipulated.
The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) holds the key to our economic development. Yet there was no hint as to how the government intends to address the rising frustration in smaller provinces of Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa that the government has gone back on the decision of the All Parties Conference (APC) on May 28, 2015 to build the western route of the corridor on priority basis, he said.
The economy will continue to be in a spin as long as the government borrows more and more from foreign lenders to retire domestic debt.
Issuing foreign currency bonds at a rate much higher than prevailing rates in the region is disastrous for the economy besides raising questions about who is the beneficiary, the former President said.