Next budget should focus on protecting the purchasing power of the poor: CPD

The Center for Policy Dialogue (CPD) has recommended prioritizing people’s well-being and ability to buy in the budget for fiscal year 2022-23.

To ease the burden of rising prices and diminishing purchasing power of people on low and fixed incomes, the CPD proposed that measures be taken to selectively reduce import and domestic taxes. and stabilize the exchange rate.

Also, in order to contain the budget deficit, the think tank proposed measures to strengthen the mobilization of domestic resources and increase both the capacity and the efficiency of public expenditure.

CPD Executive Director Dr. Fahmida Khatun presented the recommendations for the budget on Tuesday during a press briefing at the CPD office in Dhaka.

“We have inefficiency in revenue collection and expenditure for the execution of our budget,” said Dr Fahmida Khatun.

She suggested increasing revenue collection by eliminating the inefficiency of the National Revenue Board as well as increasing the use of technology.

The CPD hopes that the government will view the FY23 budget as an opportunity to ensure the well-being of marginalized people, revive the Covid-affected economy and stimulate private sector investment.

To improve the well-being of the population, the expansion and scaling up of social safety net programs have been proposed by the CPD, especially given the negative footprints of the pandemic.

On the implementation of infrastructure projects, the CPD proposed that the government set up an independent monitoring mechanism to examine the feasibility and assess the economic and financial returns, financing modalities, accountability of the service of debt and ensuring good overall governance.

Distinguished Researcher Prof. Mustafizur Rahman, Dr. Khondaker Golam Moazzem, and Senior Researcher Towfiqul Islam Khan also spoke at the session.