Pre Budget Public Hearing for Inviting Suggestions on Budget 2016-17 at PIPS.

With the aim to get input from multiple stakeholders on the Budget 2016-17, Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services in collaboration with Senate Standing Committee of Finance conducted a public hearing on May 11, 2016. Around 75 participants including Senators, representatives of all Pakistan producers’ associations including textile, surgical instruments, agricultural goods and poultry; members of faculty and students of Economics from Quaid-i-Azam University, PIDE, Preston, SZABIST as well as media representatives attended the 7th public/experts’ hearing organised by PIPS. It began with the National Anthem, followed by the recitation of Holy Quran. Acting Executive Director PIPS, Mr. Muhammad Rashid Mafzool Zaka, welcomed the participants and gave and overview of the objectives of the public hearing. He said that public hearings are one of the key instruments of public inpout and oversight of executive policies by the parliamentary standing committees worldover. He informed that PIPS introduced the concept in 2015 and til-date this is seventh hearing held by the Institute. He welcomed Senator Saleem Mandviwala, Chairperson, Standing Committee on Senate on Finance, for his visionary leadership to express desire to hold it well in advance of budget so as to get suggestions of respective associations and general public in time and before budget session at the Parliament. He also handed over two sets of suggestions to the worthy Senator that PIPS had received from All Pakistan Textile Association and Pakistan Poultry Association. Senior Economist, Dr. Kaiser Bengali, deliberated on the “Macroeconomic Conditions of Pakistan.” Whereas, Ms. Robina Athar, Additional Secretary Ministry of Commerce, spoke on “Trade and domestic commerce in the context of Annual Budget.” Public Sector Expenditures in the context of Annual Budget came under discussion with the presentation of Dr. Wasim Shahid Malik, Assistant Professor, School of Economics, Quaid-i-Azam University. The issue of Tax Reforms in the Budget 2016-17 was covered by Dr. Vaqar Ahmed, Deputy Executive Director, Sustainable Development Policy Institute Islamabad. A highly interactive Q&A session aimed at extracting maximum input from multiple stakeholders followed the keynote speeches. The event concluded with remarks from the Guest of Honor, Senator Saleem Mandviwala, Chairman Senate Committee on Finance Revenue Economics Affairs Statistics and Privatization, who commended the role of Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services (PIPS) in conducting the events involving interlocutors from various fields and backgrounds.The event was a joint effort of PIPS legislation, research and training wings and Senate Standing Committee on Finance and Statistics and Ms Samer Awais PIPS Director (training) presented vote of thanks in the end.

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