Minister singles out major areas of next budget

06Nov 2019
Felister Peter
The Guardian
Minister singles out major areas of next budget

THE government is expecting to spend 34.3trn/- in the 2020/2021 financial year, up from the current 33trn/- with priorities being improvement of business environment, climate change and creation of an industrialized economy.

Dr Philip Mpango

Efforts will also be directed to ensuring successful implementation of the Second Five-Year National Development Plan (2016/17 – 2020/21).

Finance and Planning Minister Dr Philip Mpango said yesterday that recurrent expenditure will be increased by 4.7 percent to 21.6trn/-, equivalent to 13.7 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) while development expenditure will account for eight percent of the total national income,  at 12.6trn/-.

He was tabling in the National Assembly estimates of the national budget for the 2020/2021 fiscal year and implementation report of the national development plan for the first quarter of 2019/2020 financial year.

The minister noted that in the 2020/2021 fiscal year, internal revenues are expected to increase to 23.4trn/-.  Tax revenues are expected to rise by 4.3 percent to 19.7trn/- from 18.9trn/- this financial year. Non-tax revenues are projected at 3.6trn/- and expected to increase to 4.3trn/- by 2022/23.

Dr Mpango said the government is expecting to receive 154.2bn/- from development partners through general budget support (GBS), with basket funds totaling 172.9bn/- and another 941.5bn/- in project funds.

“Our 2020/2021 budget will focus on creating an enabling investment and business environment to attract both local and foreign investors. We will put in place a good environment for implementation of projects through public-private partnership (PPP) in areas of priority”, he declared.

The minister highlighted some challenges affecting implementing budgets as reluctance by traders to use Electronic Fiscal Devices (EFD), tax evasion and failure by development partners to remit funds as per their pledges.

Representing the Shadow Finance Minister, David Silinde (Momba—Chadema) urged more investment in the livestock sector since it engages more than 50 percent of the population and contributes between 7.4 and 10 percent in the national income.

The MP cautioned on re-allocation of budgeted funds to other projects, saying it affects implementation of the Five-Year national development plan.  He said that there is a need for specific legislation for budget oversight and implementation of the development plan as its absence contributed to failure of the First Five-Year National Development Plan, 2011/12 – 2015/16.

The MP faulted the government for poor agriculture budget allocation whereby in the 2018/2019 budget a total of 98bn/- was allocated for the sector but only 41.2bn/- was disbursed.

Contributing, Serengeti MP Chacha Rioba said almost half of the country’s population depends on agriculture, so there should be strategies to invest more in the sector especially in regions where our main cash crops are produced.

The government should prioritize the construction of ginneries and textile factories to boost cotton production in the 17 regions that cultivate the crop, the legislator emphasized.