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Event Title: Pre-Budget Session on the State of Economy and Annual Budget 2024-25 for the Members of the Senate of Pakistan at Parliament House

Event Date: 2024-06-11

 A Pre-Budget Session on the State of Economy and Annual Budget 2024-24 was held exclusively for the Members of the Senate of Pakistan on Tuesday. The event was successfully organized at the Parliament House, jointly by the Senate Secretariat’s Parliamentary Development Unit (PDU), the Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Services (PIPS) and Mustehkam Parlimaan. The session sailed through a thorough presentation on the Annual Budget 2024-25 and significant policy measures of the government presented in the upcoming budget. The participants also included the newly elected  senators, and were briefed on critical parliamentary processes and role of the Senate, in the Annual Budget of the country.

Senator Saleem Mandviwalla, the Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Finance and Revenue, Former Finance Minsiter had an interactive session with the Participants and shared experiences from the perspective of budget scrutiny through standing committees, particularly from the working of the Senate Standing  committee on Finance and Revenue. Throughout the budgetary cycle, the Senate engages in thorough deliberations, examining the proposed budget clause by clause.

Saleem Mandviwalla concise that the Senate only plays a recommendatory role in the Annual Budget, which is not bound to be accepted by the Government, however he also explained the process of approval, through which crucial recommendations can be passed and enacted upon. Senator Azam Nazeer Tarar, Federal Minister for Law and Justice and Parliamentary Affairs commented that Pakistan is in dire need of charter of economy to upswing the economic condition of the country. Similarly Senator Fouzia Arshad, Danesh Kumar, Mohsin Aziz, and other Honourable Senators participated and stressed for chalking out plans for revival of economy.

Similarly the Former Secretary, Senate Secretariat, Muhammad Anwar illustrated on the role of Senate in the Budget Process as an important recommendatory body. While the National Assembly holds primary authority over financial matters, the Senate's role in scrutinizing and offering amendments to the budgetary proposals is paramount which may within 14 days make recommendations thereon to the National Assembly.

During the program, other several key presentations were delivered:

Reading and Analyzing the Budget Publications

Director Budget Computerisation, Ministry of Finance, Muhammad Adnan Azeem conducted an informative session on the various budget books which reflect the most important policies of the government and expansion of the Annual Budget Statement which is a constitutional requirement to be presented before the National Assembly and the Senate of Pakistan. The session gave an overview of what to look for in each book and what information is provided in each one of them.

State of Pakistan’s Economy:Challenges and Opportunities in the context of Annual Budget 2024-25

Former State Bank Chair, Dr Wasim Shahid Malik demonstrated senators on various aspects of Pakistan’s economy with a historical perspective. Amidst Pakistan struggle to reinvigorate growth and rising inflation the session provided insights to measures that have become inevitable for policy makers to consider.

The honorable Senators took a keen interest in the presentations, asking questions and engaging in discussions. Their queries were answered to their best satisfaction, considering for legislators to review commitment to understanding and effectively utilizing their legislative insight in the budget process.

In conclusion, by the Panel including Dr Syed Parvaiz Abbas, Team Lead, Mustehkam Parlimaan, Muhammad Rashid Mafzool Zaka, Executive Director PIPs, the pre-budget session for Pakistan's fiscal year 2024-25 wrapped up, setting the stage for intense deliberations and policy decisions ahead of the final budget announcement. With stakeholders from various sectors expressing their expectations, crafting a comprehensive budget that addresses economic challenges while fostering growth and development.