The government is going to give priority to the mechanization of the agriculture sector in the budget for the next fiscal, 2022-23.
The move is aimed at increasing employment and internal investment by giving focus on domestic industries.
Officials of the Finance Ministry said that in the forthcoming budget, there is a proposal to give special importance to the implementation of the incentive packages announced by the Prime Minister to tackle Covid-19. Its goal is to expand local industries, they mentioned.
They said the new budget has given special emphasis on increasing food production as well as increasing employment and investment.
For this reason, there is a proposal to modernize agriculture, increase irrigation and seed incentives, rehabilitate agriculture and continue fertilizer subsidy, they said, adding that special attention is also being paid to rural development to create massive employment.
Initiative has also been taken to expand sources of tax without increasing the tax burden, they added.
The Finance Ministry officials further said that the next budget has given emphasis on education and skill development for building skilled manpower.
Besides, the allocation for this sector has increased by expanding it under social security activities as always in the budget of the next 2022-23 fiscal year, they mentioned.
Meanwhile, due to hike in commodity prices, the budget for FY 2022-23 proposes to increase the scope of free and low-cost food distribution among low-income group of people.
According to the Finance Ministry, Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal will present the budget for the fiscal year 2022-23 in Parliament on June 9.
This is the fourth consecutive budget of the Finance Minister and the 52nd budget of the Government of Bangladesh.
This time, initially a budget proposal of Tk 6,77,864 crore has been prepared.
Earlier, the size of the budget announced in the last fiscal year 2021-22 was Tk 6,03,681 crore. As a result, the size of the budget is increasing by 12.8 percent in the next fiscal year.
In the new proposed budget, the total income has been estimated at Tk 4,33,000 crore. The budget deficit is Tk 2,44,864 crore, which is 15.38 percent of GDP and Tk 74,183 crore more than the budget for the current fiscal year.
Dr Fahmida Khatun, executive director at the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), said Bangladesh’s economy has expanded very well despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The finance minister will soon formulate the third Covid budget, which will be presented in parliament in early June this year. In view of the current circumstances, the budget for FY 2022-23 has to address a number of ongoing and emerging challenges while striving to move forward with speed and quality,” she added.
“As for sectoral allocations, higher allocations are needed in a few sectors on a priority basis. Investment for the health sector is a high priority not only for dealing with the ongoing pandemic, but also for the overall strengthening of the health ecosystem in the country. Besides, recovering learning loss due to the pandemic, improvement of the quality of education and skills development will also require more resources. Among others, rural infrastructure and social protection also deserve bigger allocations,” she mentioned.