The government of Pakistan has requested a one-year extension from the World Bank for its $400 million Punjab Revenue Improvement (PRR) project, according to a source on February 6. This extension aims to revise specific project development objective indicators to improve attribution and remove outdated metrics.
The proposed actions per the Ministry of Economic Affairs’ restructuring paper include:
- Extending the project timeline by a year to June 30, 2025 to allow sufficient time for completion of the Investment Project Financing component.
- Revising some PDO indicators to improve attribution and remove obsolete readings.
- Modifying selected Implementation-Related Indicators and Disbursement-Linked Indicators to account for the extended project duration.
- Adjusting certain DLIs and verification procedures to account for unforeseen events not considered in the original project design.
The World Bank’s approval is awaited on the proposed extension and revisions to allow full implementation of the PRR project’s governance reforms and capacity building programs across Punjab province.
Proposed modifications to the Project Development Objective (PDO) indicators include
- Shifting focus from the tax to GDP ratio (percentage) to increasing the Federal Board of Revenue’s (FBR) total tax collections relative to GDP. The target is to increase FBR’s collections from 8.5% of GDP in FY2023 to 8.8% in FY2025. This change aims to improve attribution and more accurately reflect the implementing agency’s work.
- The Paying Taxes indicator in the discontinued World Bank Doing Business report will no longer be used to monitor time required to prepare, file, pay or withhold General Sales Tax (GST) and Corporate Income Tax (CIT).
- Since the World Bank no longer publishes the Doing Business report, alternate criteria will be applied.
These proposed changes seek to enhance the efficacy and relevance of the Pakistan Raises Revenue (PRR) project by aligning it with current goals and conditions. The modifications aim to improve the project’s monitoring framework as per the new indicators.