Senate resumed its session in Islamabad on Friday morning with Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani in the chair.

Chairman Standing Committee on National Health Services Sajjad Hussain Turi presented before the House report of the Committee on the National Health Care Bill 2017.

The house resumed discussion on the budgetary proposals for the next fiscal year.

Participating in the debate, Rehman Malik voiced serious concerns over reduction in remittances and exports saying this has resulted in the burgeoning of public debt.  

He said the government should cut its borrowings and focus on putting the economy on self-reliance.

He said overseas Pakistanis should be fully facilitated in order to encourage remittances.

He said maximum resources should be diverted towards energy sector in order to provide relief to the people.

Usman Khan Kakar called for equal development of all areas of the country.

He regretted that the less developed areas have totally been ignored in the budget.  He said the budget envisages incentives for elite class and industrialists but it carries nothing for the poor lot.

Javed Abbasi said that overall security and economic situation stands improved in the country as a result of policies of the government.

This is the reason that the foreign investors are pouring in with their investments.

He said world financial institutions are also recognizing the economic gains made by the country over the last four years. 

He said instead of resorting to criticism, the opposition should give concrete suggestions on the financial bill 2017-18.

Najma Hameed described the budget as pro-poor. She said it is a matter of great satisfaction that no new tax has been levied.

She said that the government has given relief to the farmers by reducing the prices of fertilizers.

Daud Achakzai said ample funds should be allocated to address the problem of shortage of water in Balochistan including Gwadar. 

He said transmission system should be upgraded in order to address the issue of line losses.

He described 10 percent increase in salaries and pensions as meager and insufficient.

Responding to a calling attention notice, Minister of State for Interior Baligh-ur-Rehman said the foreign tourists can visit Gilgit Baltistan without any NOC from the interior ministry.

He said the provision of NOC was lifted just last month on the request of Gilgit Baltistan government in order to promote tourism in the area.

He said the GB government has been asked to ensure full protection of the foreign tourists.

The House has been adjourned to meet on Monday at 11 a.m.

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