The Centre for Policy Dialogue on Friday said that the proposed budget lacked sensitivity towards existing and emerging macro stresses such as pressure on balance of payment and exchange rate and inflationary expectations.
There was no reflection in the speech of the finance minister or budgetary measures for addressing the challenges, it said.
The CPD in its analysis on the proposed national budget for 2018-2019 fiscal also said that there was no well-crafted action plan for implementing the budget, strengthening revenue collection, raising efficiency in delivering public expenditure and improving expenditure efficacy.
The issue of inclusivity of growth and other achievements was better addressed in the budget mostly through short term measures, it said, adding that the medium to long term challenges including inequality, both income and wealth, however, remained ignored.
The organisation presented the analysis at a press briefing held at Hotel Lakeshore in Dhaka.
The country will require a total of Tk 1,47,000 crore additional investments, including Tk 1,17,000 private sector investments, to achieve the projected GDP growth at 7.80 per cent, said CPD distinguished fellow Debapriya Bhattacharya.
He also expressed doubts over and the possibility of achieving investment target as well as maintaining inflation target within 5.6 per cent against the backdrop of rising price of key commodities, including oil and food in global market.
He also raised questions about the quality of attained growth against the backdrop of its role in poverty reduction, reducing inequality, employment generation and income distribution.
‘People having capital and assets get more scope of increasing income then those having labour and entrepreneurship in the current GDP growth system,’ Debapriya said.
The CPD termed the projection for import growth at 12 per cent as unrealistic following huge growth in the outgoing fiscal at 24.5 per cent.
Revenue collection at 30.8 per cent is also projected to grow faster than public
expenditure at 25.1 per cent, it said.
The government has set an unrealistic revenue target to keep it consistent with the expenditure structure, it said.
The research organisation also said that the budget also lacked a plan for implementation of the new VAT law.
The government has failed to give priority to reforms needed to modernise the country’s tax system, it said.
CPD executive director Fahmida Khatun, distinguished fellow Mustafizur Rahman, research director Khondaker Golam Moazzem and research fellow Towfiqul Islam Khan, among others, spoke at the briefing.
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