Punjab budget focuses on energy, agricultureMarch 17th, 2008 - 7:27 pm ICT by admin
Chandigarh, March 17 (IANS) Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal Monday presented his second budget with emphasis on energy and agriculture. The budget for 2008-09 fiscal has doubled the outlay for the energy sector from Rs.1,062.02 crore (Rs.10.62 billion) in 2007-08 to Rs.2204.52 crore (Rs.22.04 billion).
The allocation for the agriculture and horticulture sector has gone up from Rs.200.08 crore (Rs.2 billion) to Rs.302.52 crore (Rs.3.02 billion), a hike of 51.20 percent.
The finance minister pegged the total size of the budget at Rs.31,634.61 crore (Rs.316.34 billion) that included revenue expenditure of Rs.25,261.20 crore (Rs. 252.61 billion), capital expenditure at Rs.3,482.94 crore (Rs.34.82 billion), public debt repayment at Rs.2,446.05 crore (Rs.24.46 billion), and loans and advances Rs.36.85 crore (Rs.368.5 million).
The state’s economy during the 10th Five-Year Plan did not match up to the target set by The Planning Commission, growing at 5.8 percent as against the target of 6.4 percent, according to the budget.
The Planning Commission has indicated a target of 5.90 percent growth for the state during the 11th Five-Year Plan (2007-12) against 9.00 percent for the national economy.
The budget was presented after the model code of conduct has come into force in the state.
The state government announced elections to the village, block and district executives last week. The elections are scheduled for April 7.
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