Jamaica News: Central Government’s $835.9 billion programmed expenditure for fiscal year 2019/20 will be financed from the Consolidated Fund, and Appropriations-in-Aid.
Finance and Public Service Minister, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, says the Consolidated Fund will cover $803.2 billion, with the remaining $32.7 billion coming from Appropriations-in-Aid.
He made the announcement while delivering the opening presentation in the 2019/20 Budget Debate in the House of Representatives on March 7.
Appropriations-in-Aid means any revenue that a Department collects in the ordinary course of business, which has been approved by Parliament to be used by the Department.
Dr. Clarke said the $803.2 billion provision comprises Non-Debt Expenditure of $528.8 billion, and Public Debt Servicing of $274.4 billion.
He informed that non-debt central government expenditure will comprise: recurrent expenditure – $421.2 billion; capital expenditure – $72.1 billion; and Below-the-line expenditure of $35.5 billion, including a provision towards the Bank of Jamaica’s (BoJ) capitalisation.
The Minister told the House that approximately $210.4 billion of the recurrent expenditure will fund central government employees’ compensation for 2019/20, inclusive of increases agreed on with public sector unions.
He further indicated that the remaining $210.7 billion is earmarked to fund recurrent programmes.
Key among the programmed recurrent expenditures are: $2.7 billion to the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, to meet expenses associated with islandwide disaster mitigation and various road improvements; and $339.9 million to support planning and other pre-investment activities associated with three major projects being coordinated by the Urban Development Corporation (UDC).
These, Dr. Clarke pointed out, are: construction of the new Parliament building; establishment of Government Oval at National Heroes Park; and the development of Port Royal.
While acknowledging that, nominally, the 2019/20 recurrent programmes allocation is “flat,” relative to the 2018/19 revised Recurrent Estimates, the Minister argued that the comparisons between both years must take account of two factors.
These, he indicated, are: significant increases in the First and Second Supplementary Estimates over the approved 2018/19 Budget, and that approximately $8.3 billion of the amounts provided in the 2018/19 First and Second Supplementary Estimates were for meeting one-off expenditures, “which will not be repeated in fiscal year 2019/20.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Clarke said the 2019/20 Central Government Capital Budget of $72.1 billion reflects a five per cent increase over the 2018/19 Revised Estimates, “which more than doubles the capital expenditure levels inherited by this Administration.”
Source: JIS News