The government’s annual development plan may be curtailed by nearly Tk 5,000 crore, to Tk 1,55,719 crore (1.557 trillion), this year, hinted the Planning Commission officials.
Local resources’ share in the revised ADP may remain intact but the project aid is likely to be downsized in line with a finance ministry allocation, sources said.Though the finance ministry did not formally reveal the 2017-18 fiscal year’s revised ADP figure, it verbally informed the commission about it, the sources added.
However, it is still a primary figure and the final figure will only be available once the National Economic Council (NEC), the highest economic policy making body, finalises it.
This year’s original ADP allocation was Tk 1,60,669 crore, including Tk 95,515 crore from local resources, Tk 57,000 crore from foreign money and autonomous corporations’ Tk 8,154 crore.
The allocation from local resources may remain unchanged but project assistance (PA) allocation is going to see a large cut by Tk 4,590 crore to Tk 52,050 crore.
The Economic Relations Division (ERD) has already proposed the Planning Commission for it after it finanlised PA share in the upcoming revised ADP, the ERD soruce said.
The main reason for keeping intact local money is that the government thinks the ADP execution has now improved and more money is needed to rebuild the roads severely damaged by excessive rains this year.“This year ADP implementation rate is better than the last four years. So, there’s no reason for slashing local money allocation,” Planning Commission member Dr Shamsul Alam argued.
“In addition, many rural road infrastructures have been destroyed by lingering rainy season this year. Repairing those will require a huge amount of money,” he said.
He supported the finance ministry’s decision on keeping the local money’s share, saying that it will play an important role in advancing development shemes prior to the start of the rainy season.
Last year, original ADP size was Tk 1,23,346 crore, which was later slashed to nearly Tk 1,19,296 crore mainly from corporations’ budget.
The original allocation included Tk 70,700 crore from the government fund and Tk 40,000 crore from project aid, which finally stood at Tk 77,700 crore and Tk 33,000 crore in revised ADP.
The government had to drastically cut the PA allocation by Tk 7,000 crore and compensate the same from local money after the Gulshan attack which dealt a huge blow to execution of aided projects.
Meanwhile, the implementing agencies managed to spend Tk 54,718 crore or 33.35 percent of original ADP allocations in the first seven months of this fiscal year, the highest level in five years, mainly propelled by a better foreign money utilisation.
However, Implementation, Mnitoring & Evaluation (IMED) figures show that local resource spending has nosedived to a five-year low at 30.02 percent, whereas the rate was 36.63 percent, the highest in the last four years.
PA spending, on the other hand, jumped to five-year peak at 38.63 percent in the first seven months, while the rate was 26.52 percent during the same period a year earlier that faced a big challenge to bring back normality in aided project implementations.