A Tk140.45bn budget the 2013-14 fiscal year was proposed for the local government, rural development and cooperative ministry, smaller than the Tk144.21bn expenditure of the revised budget for the outgoing 2012-13 fiscal.
In the budget proposal Finance Minister AMA Muhith tabled before the parliament yesterday, he made special mentions to the local government sector, saying it was one of the sectors that “can play a defining role in taking the country forward”.
However, according to the budget proposal, the local government division has received Tk129.61bn (5.83% of total budget) while the rural development and cooperative division got only Tk10.85bn. Both allocations are smaller than the previous fiscal’s allocations both in absolute terms and in proportion to the total budget. The local government division’s allocation in the previous fiscal was Tk132.2bn (6.98% of total).
The development portions of these allocations are Tk111.95bn and Tk8.22bn respectively.
Chittagong University professor Tofayel Ahmed, a local government analyst, told the Dhaka Tribune there was nothing new in the proposed budget for the local government sector.
“This is a budget of the local government ministry. The local government institutions will get only a small portion of this allocation which could be at best Tk12 to 13bn. The rest of the allocation will be spent for other sectors and agencies under the ministry. Some projects will also get their expenditure from this allocation,” he said.
“The government should concentrate on the local government institutions, if they want to ensure good governance which is an important factor in the country’s development,” he added.
In the outgoing fiscal’s revised budget, the development allocation for local government division was Tk112.74bn against Tk108.15bn in the original budget. For rural development and cooperative division the development was Tk9.44bn against Tk8.68bn in the original.