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Sindh Cabinet reviews provinces financial and development position:.

By KARACHI, April 13, 2010 (Balochistan Times): Sindh Cabinet which met here Tuesday with Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah in the chair was briefed in detail about the Provinces financial and development position. The Cabinet had held a session on Monday also in which the Cabinet had given approval to have a joint venture with Al-Abbas group for Coal exploration in Badin Coal field along with setting up a 300 mw power plant at a total cost of Rs 61.5 billion. Later addressing a press conference, the Chief Minister said that unlike the past practice when Sindh Cabinet used to be taken into confidence only one or two hours of Assembly session, the present Sindh Government has established a new trend in letting the Sindh Cabinet know about the Provinces financial and development position as well informing the people about the same through the Cabinet. He pointed out that Sindhs ADP for 2009-10 stood at Rs.75 billion and unlike the past when releases used to be made only 2-3 month before the close of financial year, this government made 50 percent releases by end of July or early August while rest was made by the end of February or early March so that development process continued unabated. Qaim Ali Shah said that as far as the question of performance of Planning and Development department is concerned, it is looked for the entire year but we have given the position for eight months and sell out the details thereof before the Assembly on April 15. He said that the Cabinet was today informed about the shortfall of Rs.45 billion in the releases made by the Federal Government which has hinted that it can only provide only Rs 10-11 billion more. He said as far as the Sindh Government is concerned it has fully met its targets and the shortfall from Federal Government appeared because of 50 percent cut applied on PSDP due to financial constraints. He pointed out that before the announcement of NFC Award, Sindh used to get 80 percent funds from Federal Government, but from next year, certainly a change will come. He said that out of Rs 75 billion for ADP. this government had so far released Rs 60 billion to various departments and upto hundred percent in road sector. Referring to allegations of with-holding the funds of Local Bodies, the Chief Minister made it clear that government released 100 percent funds. The CM Qaim Ali Shah categorically announced that Sindh Government will get its right of GST on Services and its collection by itself and get the relevant decision in this regard in the document which was signed by President Asif Ali Zardari but was somehow got excluded. He said that both President and Prime Minister had fully endorsed the stand taken by Sindh government on this issue and the error made with exclusion of this provision from the NFC Award will stood corrected after return of Prime Minister. At the outset the Chief Minister referred to confirmation of joint venture agreement reached with Al-Abbas group in the Cabinet meeting on Monday and said the 3-member cabinet sub-committee okayed Sindh Government to go along with the joint venture describing the project as feasible. He said whatever a section of the press reported about some inside story of Sindh Cabinet on Monday was totally baseless and pointed out that he had left the Cabinet meeting yesterday only to go to Quetta to attend an important meeting on NFC convened by Chief Minister Baluchistan. He said the Cabinet noded for go ahead to joint venture project only because it did not want the repetition of abandoning of Thar coal exploration and power generation project by a reputed Chinese company only for a half cent difference on tariff with WAPDA. He said that huge foreign investment is coming in Thar Coal projects including the one of gasification and power plant project being implemented by renowned scientist Dr Samar.

(THROUGH ASIA PULSE)
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Publication:Balochistan Times (Baluchistan Province, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Apr 13, 2010
Words:665
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