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rich get richer and poor get Subsidy, Govt to introduce Subsidy for poor to buy essential items: PM Khan

Target subsidy system will provide financial assistance to millions of families.

In order to help and uplift the weaker segments of society in buying their basic essential commodities through a targeted subsidy, PM Imran Khan says that the Pakistan government is committed to providing financial resources to such people.

The program is aimed to be launched from next month and the instructions are also given to finalize the system.

PM Khan was presiding over a briefing held on Monday about introducing a new system of providing government subsidies to the weaker segments of society.

Minister for Finance Shaukat Tarin, special assistants to PM Dr Sania Nishtar, Dr Waqar Masood, Dr Shehbaz Gill, National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) President Arif Usmani, and other relevant officers were in attendance.

Nishtar briefed the PM about the proposed system of providing targeted subsidies. She told the meeting that with the completion of 92% of the Ehsaas Survey, the remaining work will be completed by the end of this month.

The NBP president also briefed the meeting about the proposed system of providing a government subsidy to deserving families.

Furthermore, the meeting mentioned that the introduction of a targeted subsidy system aims to provide financial assistance to millions of families in buying basic essential commodities.

The prime minister appreciated the efforts of the concerned in formulating the targeted subsidy system and said that the provision of a government subsidy to the rich and poor alike was a waste of public resources and tantamount to usurping the right of the poor and deserving.

While presenting the government’s proposed budget for FY2021-22 last week, Minister for Finance Shaukat Tarin had proclaimed on the floor of the National Assembly that the “trickle-down” approach to helping the poor in macroeconomic policy has never translated into “real relief” for the most downtrodden.

Tarin said beginning next fiscal year, the government will instead pursue a “bottom-up approach” for the 4-6 million households most vulnerable to the vagaries of the economy.

The package, which aims to provide substantial sums of credit, free of interest for the large part, to the most vulnerable segments of society (details below), will be aimed at empowering the poor to take charge of their own welfare.

Every non-farming household will be provided interest-free loans of up to Rs500,000 to start a business; Every farming family will be given a sum of Rs150,000 to help harvest the new crops as an interest-free loan. A further Rs200,000, also free of interest, will be provided to purchase tractors and farm machinery;

All vulnerable households will be given low-interest loans of Rs2 million as part of a low-cost housing scheme so they can become homeowners. Every household will be provided the Insaf Sehat Card and one member of every household will be provided free technical training.

Palwasha Khattak
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