Parliamentary Committees and the Budget Process

Thinking an Effective Role in Pakistan: Exclusive Workshop for the National Assembly Standing Committee

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Publication No: PD-168

Rs 1,500  

PILDAT organised an exclusive workshop for the National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance & Chairs & Members of other National Assembly Standing Committees on Parliamentary Committees and the Budget Process: Thinking an Effective Role in Pakistan on April 22-23, 2009 at Hotel Marriott, Islamabad. The Workshop was organised after a special consultation with Chairperson and key members of the Standing Committee on Finance, National Assembly of Pakistan. As a non-partisan think tank working for strengthening Parliament and Democracy, PILDAT (www.pildat.org) has believed that the existing budget process in Pakistan, especially its parliamentary aspects, need to be reviewed and amended. The Workshop concluded with the recommendation that the Standing Committee on Finance of the National Assembly of Pakistan should lead the effort of reform in the Parliamentary budget process. There was agreement among the MNAs that the role of Committees needs to be strengthened, especially in the budget process. The pace of such a reform inside this Assembly needed to be improved. While the National Assembly Rules of Procedures do not stop committees from holding pre-budget hearings relating to their Ministries/Divisions but a more pro-active role by the committees and a support infrastructure were required to strengthen Parliamentary budget process. A large number of MNAs took part in the two-day consultation while the workshop was steered by Honourable Mr. Faisal Karim Kundi, MNA, Acting Speaker, National Assembly of Pakistan; Syed Naveed Qamar, MNA, Federal Minister of Privatization (Former Federal Minister for Finance); Ms. Fauzia Wahab, MNA, Chairperson, National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance; Mr. Omar Ayub Khan, Former Minister of State for Finance, Sardar Asseff Ahmed Ali, MNA, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission; Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, MNA, Chairman National Assembly Standing Committee on Commerce; Sardar Mehtab Ahmed Khan, MNA, Senior Member National Assembly Standing Committee on Defence and Mr. Rasheed Godil, MNA, Member Finance Committee, amongst others. Senior members of Parliamentary staff also took part in the two-day event.

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