Pakistan’s domestic debt recorded at Rs 14,884 billion

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Senate was informed on Tuesday that the Country’s total domestic debt was recorded at Rs 14,884 billion till June 30, 2017.

Responding to various supplementary questions during the Question Hour in the Upper House, the Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Muhammad Baligh Ur Rehman said the domestic debt was around 40 percent of the total gross domestic product (GDP) which was under the limit of Fiscal Debt Limitation Act.

The minister, while giving the break-up of domestic borrowing, said Rs 5,436 billion was borrowed during January-June 2013 and Rs 4,263 billion was paid back with net borrowing of Rs 1,173 billion.

Similarly, Rs 14,731 billion was paid back against receipts of Rs 16,111 billion (Net borrowing Rs 1,380 billion) in 2013-14, Rs 9,983 billion against receipts of Rs 11,256 billion (net borrowing (Rs 1,273 billion) in 2014-15, Rs 10,013 billion against receipts of Rs 11,439 billion (net borrowing Rs 1,426 billion) in 2015-16 and Rs 13,873 billion against receipts of Rs 15,124 billion (net borrowing Rs 1,251 billion) in 2016-17.

To a supplementary question, the minister said the foreign remittances also witnessed sharp increase which surged to $ 20 billion from $ 13 billion since 2013.

To another question, Baligh Ur Rehman said the current deficit account had nothing to do with illegal transaction of money but it was due to surge in import of machineries for China Pakistan Economic Corridor Projects (CPEC) and hike in fuel prices in international market.

The minister said the government had taken various measures including enactments of Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Act 2010, amendments/reforms in AML-Act, issuance of revised AML/CFT Regulators, revision of currency transaction report (CTR) threshold to Rs 2 million and strengthening the capabilities of law enforcement agencies (LEAs) etc to control the illegal transaction of money.

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To a separate question, the minister said number of tax filers had been almost doubled as the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) collected Rs 3,262 million under direct and indirect taxes during the last fiscal year.

To another question, Baligh Ur Rehman said an amount of Rs 18,279 million had been disbursed among 18,246 persons under the Prime Minister’s Youth Business Loan Scheme in the country. He said no interest was being charged on small loans up to Rs 50,000 while only 6 percent service charges was being charged on loans of Rs 2 million.

The minister said earlier only National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) was disbursing loans among the youth; however, more eight other banks were also authorized to the provide loans under the PM youth loan scheme. He said a total 80,483 applications were received for loans from across the Country under the scheme.

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