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Financial Powers, Delegation of


Financial Powers, Delegation of powers delegated to the administrative ministries or divisions across the government in financial matters. Under the rules of business of 1975 (issued in revised form in 1996), references to the Ministry of Finance are mandatory on all issues involving finances in specified areas. As a general rule, the ministries/divisions and their attached departments and autonomous organisations are free to incur expenditure within the budget allocations made by the finance division with the approval of the Jatiya Sangsad.

The delegation of financial powers made by the finance division fall into two broad categories: first, those relating to the revenue budget, and second, those relating to the development budget. All financial matters in relation to the revenue budget are to be disposed of by the ministries/divisions themselves in accordance with the provisions laid down in various codal rules and government instructions and orders. In pursuance of an office memorandum issued on 15 August 1983 by the Finance Ministry's finance division, it was decided to minimize frequent references to the finance division. To that end, the finance division's office memorandum specified in an annex a list of twenty-seven cases on which reference has to be made to that division. Although a minor revision was made in April 1990 in relation to it, the list of twenty-seven items remained basically the same.

Another office memorandum, issued in April 1994 by the finance division, contains as many as thirty-three cases or areas where the powers for implementation of development budget are delegated in full or in part. The heads of various attached departments, including the development-related project directors under such departments, have been allowed to enjoy varying powers depending upon the nature and size of their projects. The projects are categorized, depending on the financial outlay, into A, B and C. A category project is limited to taka 50 million, B category project above taka 50 million but not exceeding taka 100 million, whereas C category projects have financial outlay of above taka 100 million.

The authority for project approval is also delegated between the relevant ministers and the planning minister, on the one hand, and the Executive Committee of national economic council on the other. The relevant ministers can approve only Technical Assistance Project Proposals costing up to taka 10 million, and the authority to approve over taka 10 million lies with the Minister for Planning. He can also approve an investment project up to taka 100 million. All cases above taka 100 million require the approval of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC). [AMM Shawkat Ali]