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Something special in the budget hopes

Budget for FY-24 to be placed today

Published : 31 May 2023 09:19 PM

Amid the constant inflationary pressure, the government is all set to place the national budget proposal for FY24, amounting to Tk 7,61,785 crore before the national parliament today (Thursday).  

It represents a 12% increase in national spending from the previous year. The revenue collection target for the upcoming fiscal year has been set at Tk. 5,000 billion, marking a 15% rise from that of the current fiscal year. 

Earlier, on 11th May, the Cabinet meeting approved the same amount to be placed before the Jatiya Sangsad. 

Ahead of the national elections, scheduled to be held around the end of the current year 2023, there is a common speculation that the government will certainly keep something special in the budget to create attraction. 

The Finance Minister is set to deliver his budget speech with a possible title “Unnayner Derdoshok: Smart Bangladesher Abhimukhe.”

Meanwhile the official concerned said that the budget would not be an ambitious nor expansionary one.

Finance ministry officials said Kamal would present his vision on how to make a ‘Smart Bangladesh’ in his budget speech with focus on building a smart country to cope with the 4iR.

The government this time is eying to attain a growth rate of 7.5 percent in the next fiscal year (FY24) while to contain the inflation rate around 6.5 percent. The total investment target in the next year will be 33.8 percent of the GDP.

The increase in the allocation and number of beneficiaries in the social security sector will be there in the proposal following instructions of the prime minister.

The Planning Minister has said that as the country is going through constant inflationary pressure, there are measures in this year's national budget to tame inflation and for macroeconomic stability.  

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) is tasked with collecting Tk. 4,300 billion, a target 16.2% higher than that of the previous year. 

Furthermore, the non-NBR revenue and non-tax revenue collection targets are set at Tk. 20,000 crore and Tk. 50,000 crore, respectively. As the government plans to increase the size of the upcoming budget, it is vital to acknowledge the expected substantial shortfall in overall revenue receipts for the current fiscal year. 

The NBR is supposed to gather Tk. 816.7 billion from VAT and SD, Tk. 498.5 billion from income and other profits, and Tk. 129.7 billion from customs and excise duty. 

However, according to PRI-CDRM estimates, if the NBR's revenue growth trend of the past quarter persists, the projected revenue shortfall could be around Tk. 546 billion. To meet the NBR revenue target for FY23, an average monthly collection of Tk. 482 billion (representing a monthly average growth of 60%) would be required in the last quarter. 

PRI in a recent report mentioned that "the revenue target set by the IMF, Tk. 3368 billion, is significantly lower, as it opted for a more realistic one considering the weak record of revenue collection over the past several years". 

PRI Executive Director Dr. Ahsan Mansur opines that to meet the IMF's target, the NBR will need to mobilize Tk. 1113 billion in the final quarter of this fiscal year. 

"This demands an average monthly generation of Tk. 371 billion during April—June, which corresponds to a growth rate of 24% compared to the preceding nine months’ 8% growth. According to PRI-CDRM estimates, the NBR could face a revenue shortfall of Tk. 214 billion when measured against the IMF target", he added.