Next budget to improve masses well-being, says Dar

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said on Saturday that improving the well-being of the general public and addressing their needs would be the top most priority of the government in the forthcoming budget.

He was chairing a meeting here to review budget preparations, ahead of his forthcoming visit to Washington for participation in the spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

The meeting was attended by the Finance Secretary, Secretary Economic Affairs Division, and senior officials of the ministries of finance and petroleum and natural resources.

Mr Dar said the government had held comprehensive consultations with all the stakeholders and various experts during budget preparations every year, and the same was being ensured this year as well.

Referring to recent successful consultations with the IMF, the minister said the implementation of necessary economic reforms must continue with the same vigour and determination as had been done over the past four years.

He said successful implementation of economic reforms would play a vital role in achieving higher, sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

Earlier, the finance secretary briefed the minister on the status of preparations for the budget 2017-18.

He said interaction with all the stakeholders was being actively undertaken for the preparations and the prescribed timelines were being followed strictly.

The secretary also briefed the minister on the progress of various ongoing economic reforms.