Friday, February 26, 2021

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Amid India-Pakistan Border Clashes; Islamabad Set To Increases Defence Budget

The Pakistan government under PM Imran Khan has proposed an 11.9% hike in the defence budget despite the earlier declaration that the defence spending would remain unchanged due to coronavirus which has dented the nation’s economy.

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According to reports in ExpressTribune, the budget document revealed that the defence outlay for 2020-21 would be Rs1,289 billion as compared to Rs1,152 billion allocated for the current fiscal year. The hike, however, is 5% if compared with the revised spending of Rs1,227 billion in 2019-20.

The report says that a major portion of the additional defence spending has been allocated to address the ongoing tensions between Pakistan and India which spiralled down after the Pulwama attack in Jammu and Kashmir.

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The ET report says that India also boosted its defence budget by around 6%. The report acknowledges that the size of the Indian defence budget is six times bigger than the total outlay of Pakistan’s defence. In fact, India’s defence budget is equal to Pakistan’s total budget outlay.

An analysis of budget details revealed that Rs1,289 billion figure does not include Rs369 billion allocated for pensions of retired army personnel and Rs324 billion for the armed forces development programme.

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According to the budget document 2020-21, of Rs1,289 billion, Rs475 billion has been earmarked for employees-related expenses, Rs301 billion for operating expenses, Rs357 billion for local purchases and import of arms and ammunition and Rs155 billion for civil works.

Via: Express Tribune

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