With Centre deciding to advance Budget 2017-18 presentation by about a month, the Finance Ministry has come out with comprehensive instructions for different ministries for completion of the exercise.
The instructions were issued following the Cabinet decision to merge rail and general budgets, do away with distinction between plan and non-plan expenditure, and advance date of budget presentation with a view to complete the entire exercise before March 31, the fiscal year end.
“Several structural reforms being undertaken this year, including, removal of distinction between plan and non-plan expenditure, advancement of budget presentation by about an month and merger of demands of Railways.
“Due to these changes, the timelines and informational requirements from the Ministries have also changed. These have been duly incorporated in the Budget Circular,” said the circular.
It also contains the compendium of instructions issued from time to time by Ministry of Finance on various issues. The RE (Revised Estimate) meetings of ministries/departments will be scheduled from October 17.
The annual exercise of budgeting aims at detailing the roadmap for efficient use of public resources taking into account the socio-economic and political priorities. Budgeting involves determination of what is to be done and achieved, the manner in which it is to be done and the resources required for the same.
With government deciding to do away with the Five year Plans post 12th Plan ending 2016-17, the Finance Ministry will carry out resource estimation for funding of various Central schemes and programmes as well as central funding for the State/UT schemes/programmes.
The ministry will be guided by the vision document being prepared by the NITI Aayog, as this will help in setting out the resource priorities of the government.
It has also asked the ministries to come up with multi-year projections of budgetary resources.
“This will need to follow the resource estimation of tax, non-tax and other receipts of the Centre for the budget year and the projection period in the medium term as per the FRBM Act,” the circular said.