Govt unveils austerity plan for country’s economic stability

The Federal Cabinet has decided to voluntarily surrender their salaries, use of luxury vehicles, and allowances as per austerity plan of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. Announcing the decision at a news conference after Federal Cabinet meeting in Islama…

The Federal Cabinet has decided to voluntarily surrender their salaries, use of luxury vehicles, and allowances as per austerity plan of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Announcing the decision at a news conference after Federal Cabinet meeting in Islamabad this evening, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said it will save 200 billion rupees to bring economic stability in the country.

He said all members of the federal cabinet have voluntarily surrendered their salaries and perks and privileges under the austerity plan.

The Prime Minister said the cabinet members will pay their electricity, gas and other utility bills themselves and no one of them will use luxury cars.

A committee headed by the Interior Minister will decide about giving security cars to any high official.

He said import of luxury items and vehicles will be completed banned till June next year.

Giving further details of the austerity plan, the Prime Minister said no cabinet member or other high official will use five star hotels for stay during foreign tours.

He said all ministries, departments and divisions will cut 15 percent of their expenditures.

Shehbaz Sharif said online and video link meetings will be encouraged to avoid travel expenditures for this purpose.

He said offices will open at 7:30 in the morning during summer, to save electricity.

Under the austerity plan, there will be single dish rule for weddings and other gatherings.

The Prime Minister said government houses occupied by retired officers will be vacated and this land will be used for homeless people. He said government officers will not be given more than one plot.

The Federal Cabinet has also decided to make public the record of Toshakhana gifts.

The Prime Minister also announced to send a letter to the President on behalf of the federal cabinet that the office of the President has nothing to do with the announcement of date for elections in provinces.

Answering a question, the Prime Minister said Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari pays his expenditure from his own pocket.

Regarding a question about size of the federal cabinet, he said the coalition partners are seriously pondering upon this and a good news will come soon in this regard.

Source: Radio Pakistan