NEC cuts education budget

June 01, 2014 - 12:52:38 am

ISLAMABAD: The National Economic Council (NEC) of Pakistan which met under chairmanship of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif decreased the share of budget allocation on education in Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) for the next financial year.

 The NEC also approved to increase the power of Central Development Working Party (CDWP) for approving development schemes from Rs1bn to Rs3bn. The NEC did not accept the summary of Planning Commission in which the power of CDWP was proposed to be increased from Rs1bn to Rs10bn.

Governor KP Mehtab Abbasi also protested over cutting the size of the PSDP allocation for Fata. The allocation was decreased from Rs18bn in outgoing fiscal to Rs15bn in the next year. But the Planning Commission informed the KP Governor that the government envisaged a special package of Rs4bn for Fata so its actual allocation would not decrease in 2014-15. 

The NEC approved the federal PSDP to the tune of Rs525bn  of which Rs25bn has been allocated for education including Higher Education Commission (HEC) and other education sector related development projects.

“The share of PSDP for education decreased from 6 percent in outgoing fiscal year to less than 5 percent in the next budget 2014-15,” said the sources. 

Planning Commission high-ups on Thursday night said that the allocations for education was protected at Rs25bn in outgoing and upcoming financial year. 

In the last budget, the allocation for education stood at Rs25bn and again it was envisaged at the same level.   The overall size of the PSDP stood at Rs425bn in outgoing fiscal year and would go up to Rs525bn in accordance with the approved size by the NEC. 

The share of allocation on education will decrease from 6 percent to less than 5 percent.

 But the official sources said that the education had been devolved in the aftermath of 18th constitutional amendment so there was not much need to enhance its allocation at the federal level. It may be added that education had been devolved on eve of the last budget so it was not new a phenomenon this year.