Centre to okay Rs 20,000 crore overdues by October first week: Nirmala Sitharaman

NIRMALA SITHARAMAN

NIRMALA SITHARAMANUnion Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday asked various ministries to clear capital expenditure (capex) plans for the upcoming four quarters and said the government’s expenditure plan is on the relevant track.

“Of the total Rs 60,000 crore overdue from various ministries, Rs 40,000 crore has been cleared. The remaining Rs 20,000 crore dues will be cleared by the first week of October,” she said.

“I’m looking to get the expenditure going. At this moment, I want to ensure the government does not sit on funds which are due,” she said after meeting secretaries and financial advisors of 21 key ministries.

She also asked the ministries and government departments to clear the regular payments expeditiously as lack of it disturbs the investment cycle. She asserted that dedicated efforts must be put in to ensure that outstanding payments are paid off prior to the festival season.

Besides, capex must be under close monitoring on a monthly basis to seal the possibility of no slippages.

She said that the expenditure both revenue and capital wise made by the centre offers a major support to aggregate demand. Total expenditure of the centre for 2019-20 via the Budget is Rs 27.86 lakh crore.

Of this, capital expenditure is budgeted at Rs 3.38 lakh crore (12.2 percent) in Budget Estimates 2019-20 as compared to revenue expenditure of Rs 24.27 lakh crore (87.8 percent).

The meeting was organised to analyse the total capex by the ministries in 2019-20 so far and plan for the future in current financial year. “The government expenditure plan is on track. We are looking at our Budget target. The larger story is that the government will not sit on payments due,” said Sitharaman.

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