The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA)’s budget remains insufficient despite India’s ambitions for global influence, according to the parliamentary report by External Affairs Committee.
The Committee has noted that despite its challenging mandate in making India into a leading power and influential entity among the nations of the world, MEA remains one of the least funded Central Ministries and its revised budget hovers around just 0.4 per cent of the total budgetary allocation of the Government of India since 2020-21, the Ministry of External Affairs said in its twentieth report on Demands For Grants (2023-24).
According to the External Affairs Committee report, keeping in view the magnitude and extent of India’s diplomatic outreach and foreign policy objectives, the Committee continue to feel that an allocation of at least one per cent out of the overall Budget of the GoI to the Ministry is reasonable and achievable.
The Committee, hence, have desired that the Ministry should strive to enhance its financial resources in line with its diplomatic responsibilities globally. However, the increased allocation per se without the capacity to utilize the amount would be meaningless, as per the report.
The Committee has urged the Ministry to work out a roadmap for enhancing its capacities and capabilities, whether it is in the form of structural change in the Ministry or a complete revamp of its organizational structure.
Based on the roadmap prepared, a detailed proposal may be placed before the Ministry of Finance. Steps taken in this regard may be communicated to the Committee. (ANI)