By Winston Mwale – AfricaBrief.
The Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Honourable Joseph Mathyola Mwanamvekha, MP has projected the 2020/2021 Budget at over K2 trillion representing 28.3 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Mwanamvekha made the statement today in Parliament during his presentation of the 2020/2021 Budget Statement.
The Finance Minister has allocated K29 billion for the fresh presidential election. The Minister indicated that discussions with donors on the financing of the elections have proved futile as most donors have expressed their inability to support this election.
On women and youth empowerment, the Minister said Government has increased the loan allocation to the Malawi Enterprise Development Fund to K15 billion. Out of this, K2 billion will be dedicated to be accessed by women and youth who have been directly affected by COVID-19.
On Education and Skills Development, the Minister said the sector has been allocated the largest portion of the budget amounting to K387.9 billion which he said is representing 19.2 percent of the total budget.
“The Health Sector ranks second with a projected allocation of K195.3 billion, representing 9.7 percent of the total budge, ” said Mwanamvekha.
Delivering the Statement, Mwanamvekha expressed concern over rising public debt which he said remains a major concern to the Government.
“As much as Government would have waned to reduce public debt, this was not possible during the 2019/2020 fiscal year and will likely remain unattainable during the 2020/2021 fiscal year due to the economic downturn and the resultant decline in domestic revenues.” said the Minister.
Concluding the statement, the Finance Minister said the financial year 2020/2021 budget seeks to speed up economic recovery, infrastructure development and economic empowerment for the vast majority of our people, including the youth, women and physically challenged.
Mwanamvekha said the 2020/2021 budget further aims to ride on the macroeconomic stability so far achieved during the past three fiscal years and build a resilient economy capable of withstanding unforeseen shocks.
Parliament will go into Cluster Committees to scrutinize the 2020/2021 budget from Monday, 15th June to Friday, 19th June, 2020.
Opposition Spokesperson on Finance and Chairperson of the Budget Committee will respond to the budget from Monday, 22nd June to Friday, 19th June, 2020.
This will be followed by general debate which will be curtailed on Thursday, 25th June and immediately, thereafter, the House will go into Committee of Supply up to Tuesday, 29th June, 2020.
The Budget is expected to be passed by Monday, 30th June, 2020.