Pakistan to raise salaries of govt employees in Budget 2022-23: Miftah Ismail

The government will raise salaries of its employees when it announces the federal budget 2022-23 on Friday, said Finance Minister Miftah Ismail on the sidelines of the launching ceremony of the Economic Survey 2021-22.

“We should understand that government employees too have to run their households as well,” said Miftah when asked the question by a journalist on Thursday.

The statement comes as the government on Tuesday announced its austerity measures, agreeing on a 40 percent reduction in the fuel usage of its officials and Cabinet members along with a ban on the procurement of cars, overseas tours and treatments of officials abroad, and buying of furniture and machinery for government offices.

The federal government also reinstated the weekly Saturday holiday in order to save energy and improve load-shedding management.

These measures raised the question if salaries of government employees would also see a freeze.

However, Miftah said that as inflation rises, employees also need a raise.

“It cannot be the case that as the country sees 12-15% inflation we don’t raise the salaries of government employees,” added Miftah.

Pakistan is currently in the midst of an economic crisis with foreign exchange reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) having dropped below the $10-billion mark.

Talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are ongoing, but Pakistan’s $6-billion bailout programme has yet to be revived.

Meanwhile, Consumer Price Index inflation for the current fiscal year increased to 11.3% as against 8.8% during the same period last year. Other inflationary indicators like Sensitive Price Indicator was recorded at 16.7% as against 13.5% last year. Wholesale Price Index was recorded at 23.6% compared to 8.4% same period last year.

Miftah said that the government has cut petroleum expenses besides other measures to reduce expenditure.

”We have also tried to bring austerity and would also take other measures to curtail the budget expenses,” he added.