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Budget 2023-24: Sindh earmarks Rs 410 bn for Annual Development Programme



KARACHI: Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah has announced Rs410 billion Annual Development Programme for next financial year 2023-24.

The ADP Includes Rs.410 billion Annual Development Program (ADP) which is Rs. 380 billion for Provincial ADP and Rs.30 billion for District ADP. Rs291.727 billion have been allocated for the 3,311 ongoing schemes and Rs.88.273 billion for 1,937 new schemes.

The chief minister has allocated 80 percent of development funds for ongoing schemes so that they could be completed.

The focus of the development budget for FY 2023-24 is to capitalize on the current portfolio in the aftermath of the flood situation and initiate new projects, particularly in those sectors which cater to the rehabilitation of infrastructure that was damaged during the heavy rains and floods in 2022.

Throw-forward for the entire portfolio in provincial ADP 2023-24 as of 1st July 2023 is Rs.1,095 billion. Whereas, the size of foreign project assistance has increased from Rs.91.47 billion in 2022-23 to Rs.266.691 billion in ADP 2023-24. It is mainly due to initiating new projects for rehabilitation and reconstruction of flood-damaged infrastructure in order to address livelihood, reconstruction of housing, education, health, irrigation, road network, and water & sanitation.

It may be noted that During FY 2022-23, the total development outlay was Rs.459.5 billion that included Rs.332 billion for the Provincial Annual Development Program (ADP), Rs.30 billion for District ADP, Rs.91.5 billion from Foreign Project Assistance (FPA) and a grant from Federal PSDP of Rs.6 billion for the schemes being executed by the Sindh government.

An expenditure of Rs.226 billion is estimated against the Rs332 billion Provincial ADP, including Rs.18 billion in District ADP. In addition, Rs.74 billion is the expected expenditure of FPA. In the financial year 2022-23, 772 schemes included in ADP 2022-23 were completed in various sectors; Education, Agriculture, Irrigation, Water & Sanitation, and Road. Large numbers of completed schemes are in the Road sector relating to new construction & improvement of roads are completed in various districts.

Sindh province faced the huge impact of record-breaking torrential rains and floods in 2022 which resulted in damages to 2.1 million houses and destroyed 3.8 million acres of crops. As per the „Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA)‟, the preliminary damages were $ 20.5 billion. The Government of Sindh prepared the “Sindh Strategic Action Plan for Floods 2022”, aligned with the contours of the Resilient Recovery, Rehabilitation, and Reconstruction (4R) Framework. The Government of Sindh’s response to disastrous floods was quick and all-inclusive and mobilized its resources through Provincial Disaster Management Authority, Irrigation, Works & Services Departments, and District Administration. Rs.117.4 billion was spent in FY 2022-23 on flood relief and rehabilitation from Government’s own resources. In addition, the Government of Sindh signed six projects of US$ 2,307.28 million with World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and Islamic Development Bank for flood rehabilitation and reconstruction; so that damaged infrastructure, livelihood, and compensation to the affected population are complemented and accelerated.


Sindh Food Authority inks MoAs with ICCBS to ensure safe, hygienic, healthy food



KARACHI: Sindh Food Authority (SFA), Government of Sindh, has signed two Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with the International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), University of Karachi.

Sindh Food Authority signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with Halal Certification Testing and Research Services (HCTRS) and the Industrial Analytical Center (IAC), ICCBS, University of Karachi.

This MoA aims to create a long-term framework of collaboration, cooperation, and development of a strong linkage between SFA and the research centers of the ICCBS for the testing of food products, which is in the interest of both institutions.

The SFA Director General Agha Fakhar Hussain and Prof. Dr. Farzana Shaheen, the Director of the ICCBS, University of Karachi, signed the agreement in a meeting held at the HEJ, Research Institute of Chemistry, University of Karachi on Friday evening.

Among others who attended the meeting were officials from SFA Prof. Dr. Asad Sayyed, Dr. Naveed Bhutto, Dr. Seema, Danish Arshad, and officials from ICCBS, including Prof. Dr. Abid Ali, Prof. Dr. Syed Ghulam Musharraf, Prof. Dr. Shabana Simjee, Prof. Dr. Asmat Salim, Dr. Imran Malik, Dr. Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan, Dr. Shakil Ahmed, Jawaid Riaz, and others.

In his talk, the SFA Director-General praised the efforts made by the ICCBS administration to make this agreement possible in the interest of Sindh province. He also praised the industrial support and national services of the International Center (ICCBS).

He said the authority’s goal was to guarantee that the people of Sindh were fed in a safe, hygienic, and healthy manner by standards.

I want to have strong relations between SFA and the ICCBS, University of Karachi, he said, adding that SFA is trying to make all possible efforts to provide better food items to the people of Sindh.

Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Farzana Shaheen congratulated the officials of the SFA and ICCBS on the signing of the agreement. She hoped that this agreement would further strengthen the University’s HCTRS and IAC in the province.

Halal Testing Laboratory works to standardize and uplift the high-quality standard of nutrition & hygiene in Halal-certified food & other products by international export quality standards, she said.

Talking about IAC, the director said that IAC was doing their best to meet customer’s testing requirements with integrity, reliability, accuracy, precision of data, and timeliness of reports to achieve customer satisfaction and define specifications in compliance with ISO/IEC Laboratory Accreditation System and ISO 9001Quality Management System.

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DG Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar disburses certificates



KARACHI: Director General of the Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar Hussain distributed certificates among the participants at the HEJ, University of Karachi.

The certificates were given away to the participants of the highly prestigious Training Programme over Halal Food and Meat Detection Methods Training and Inter-laboratory Comparison for Organisation of Islamic cooperation (OIC) countries (2022-SMIC-006) held at Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in hybrid format on October 23, 2023. The certificate were signed by the SMIIC General Secretary.  

Prof. Dr. Syed Ghulam Musharraf (Tamgha-e- Imtiaz) and Prof. Dr. Farzana Sheen attended the event.

The SMIIC (Standards and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries) is an intergovernmental and one of the 17 affiliated organizations of the OIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation). Its primary focus is on standardization and metrology technical elements.

Pakistani candidates participated through online sessions. The participants were selected through a detailed procedure and tests.

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Sindh Food Authority appoints Dr Rashida Irtifaq as its Ambassador



KARACHI: The Sindh Food Authority (SFA) is to appoint prominent educationist Professor Dr Rashida Irtifaq Ali as Honorary Senior Food Safety and Hygiene Ambassador.

In light of this significant appointment, a ceremony has been scheduled for January 9, 2024 at Jinnah Auditorium Dr AQ Khan Institute of Bio-Technology and Genetic Engineering, University of Karachi.

Caretaker Chief Minister Sindh Justice (R) Maqbool Baqar, Secretary Food, Government of Sindh and other dignitaries will attend the event to support the vision of the Sindh Food Authority.

Professor Dr Rashida Irtifaq Ali has been an integral part of Karachi University for the past fifty years where she not only fulfilled her teaching responsibilities but also played a pivotal role in establishing the Department of Food Sciences and Technology.

At the age of 85, Dr Rashida Ali continues to serve in academia and the industry, demonstrating an unparalleled commitment to education.

While talking to Sindhnews, Sindh Food Authority’s Director General Agha Fakhar Hussain said that the food authority had recognized contributions of Professor Dr Rashida Irtifaq by appointing her as the Honorary Senior Food Safety and Hygiene Ambassador, a position that reflects her expertise and dedication to the field.

The appointment of Dr Rashida Irtifaq will not only acknowledge her achievements but will also provide an opportunity to raise awareness among university students about the principles of health preservation related to food consumption.

In the event, Dr Rashida Irtifaq will also be presented with a shield by the Sindh Food Authority as a token of appreciation for her outstanding contributions, says Agha Fakhar.

The Sindh Food Authority was established in April 2018 under the SFA Act 2016 and the Authority has been established Under Section-3 (1) of the Act ibid with the mandate to provide safe, hygienic and health food to the people of Sindh, he adds.

The Authority is performing its functions accordingly as per the Sindh Food Authority Act 2016 but the major hurdle is the lack of awareness among general masses and food handlers at large, regarding the food safety and hygiene principles.

The authority’s mandate to provide safe, healthy and hygienic food to the people of Sindh can not only be achieved witht eh coercive measures but it requires general awareness campaign among the masses and food handlers and the issue demands the participation of all segments of the society, the DG concluded.

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