Pursuing an approach of balanced development across the country, the federal government on Friday unveiled Rs 2.1 trillion Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) for the fiscal year 2020-21, with special focus on strengthening the health sector and generating business activities to combat widespread disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Out of the total PSDP outlay, an amount of Rs 900 billion was set aside for the federal PSDP and Rs 1.235 trillion for the provinces, according to the budgetary document. The National Economic Council (NEC) had approved the PSDP allocations on June 07, with foreign assistance of Rs100 billion. As a result of efficient and well-coordinated management of the coronavirus pandemic, the economy showed signs of recovery, with growth rate stood at 3.94% during FY2020-21. As the government’s priority is to further spur economic activities in the upcoming fiscal year, therefore, the PSDP had been enhanced by 38% from Rs 650 billion (in FY2020-21) to Rs 900 billion, the document said. Special development packages were included under the regional equalization programme for next fiscal year to ensure the development of deprived areas to bring them at par with other developed regions of the country. The programme included accelerated development plan for Southern Balochistan, Karachi Transformation Plan, Socio-economic Development of Gilgit Baltistan, Sindh Development Plan for over 14 districts and enhanced allocation for newly merged districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the document added. The budgetary document said several projects were being launched under the Public Private Partnership arrangement, which included Sialkot-Kharian, Sukkur-Hyderabad, Kharian-Rawalpindi, Balkasar-Mianwali and Muzaffargarh-Mianwali roads, Quetta-Karachi-Chamman (N-25), Karachi Circular Railway and Karachi-Pipri Freight Corridor. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) continued to remain in focus as its projects had been fully funded, while special funds were kept for railways, water resource projects and housing sector in the PSDP. Meanwhile, out of total Rs 900 billion federal PSDP, the government allocated Rs 628.224 billion for federal ministries, Rs 183.235 billion for corporations, including National Highway Authority (Rs 113.75 billion) and PEPCO (Rs 69.82 billion), Rs 70 billion for Covid-19 responsive and other natural calamities programme, and Rs 61 billion for VGF for Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects. The government proposed an allocation of Rs 103.472 billion for Water Resource Division, Rs 3.55 billion for Aviation Division, Rs 80 million for Board of Investment, Rs 46.155 billion for Cabinet Division, Rs 14.32 billion for Climate Change Division, Rs1.613 billion for Commerce Division, Rs 451.32 million for Communication Division (other than NHA), Rs 1.977 billion for Defence Division while Rs1.745 billion was earmarked for Defence Production Division. Likewise, Rs 800 million was allocated for Establishment Division, Rs 9.7 billion for Federal Education and Professional Training Division, Rs 123.13 billion for Finance Division, Rs 42.4 billion for Higher Education Commission, Rs 24.2 billion for Housing and Works Division, Rs 279 million for Human Rights Division, Rs 2.9 billion for Industries and Production Division, Rs 1.899 billion for Information and Broadcasting Division and Rs 9.36 billion for Information Technology and Telecom Division. Similarly, an amount of Rs 3.73 billion was earmarked for Inter-provincial Coordination Division, Rs 21.05 billion for Interior Division, Rs 69.95 billion for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan Division, Rs 6.02 billion for Law and Justice Division, Rs 4.46 billion for Maritime Affairs Division, Rs 489.4 million for Narcotics Control Division, Rs12.017 billion for National Food Security and Research Division, Rs 21.722 billion for National Health Services Regulations and Coordination Division, Rs 125.9 million for National Culture and Literary Heritage Division, and Rs 27 billion for Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission. The government also allocated Rs 200 million for Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority, Rs 2.35 billion for Petroleum Division, Rs 19.245 billion for Planning, Development and Reform Division, Rs 590 million for Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division, Rs 30.025 billion for Railways Division, Rs 493 million for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Division, Rs 4.025 billion for Revenue Division, Rs 8.3 billion for Science and Technological Research Division, and Rs 7.36 billion for SUPPARCO. The document revealed that to augment PSDP, resources of the private sector would be leveraged with the help of Public Private Partnership Authority (PPA), attracting domestic and foreign direct investment in commercially viable projects.