Finance Minister Miftah Ismail on Tuesday announced that the limit of purchasable property value for non-filers of tax returns has been raised from Rs4 million to Rs5 million.
On April 28, the newly appointed finance minister had presented the outgoing PML-N government’s sixth full-term budget, following which the matter was referred to and discussed in the Senate.
Ismail, during his final speech on the budget in the National Assembly today, said that Senate made 49 suggestions for the 2018-2019 budget, of which 42 were approved — some in their entirety and some partially.
While opposition leaders had branded the budget “disastrous”, Ismail defended it, saying that the plan devised by the federal government is “excellent and in accordance with the economic situation of the country”.
The country had been experiencing a reduction in export levels, however, a rising trend can now be observed.
“The government produced 12,230 megawatts (MW) of electricity. I remember how the country used to be without power for 12 hours during PPP’s rule,” he said.
Ismail said that the government ensured power generation and laid down a network of roads and highways through loans.
He also credited the government for increasing, by several times, the grant given to families through the Benazir Income Support Programme.
The finance minister said that income tax would be reduced by 1% each year, while a 50% raise in conveyance allowance has already been granted for government employees working till late.
Ismail said the government has also decided to launch a sasta ghar (cheap housing) scheme.