Egyptian Ministry of Finance Issues Preliminary Financial Statement For 2018/19
Source: www.export-egypt.com 4/17/2018
Achieving economic growth by 5.8%, curbing unemployment rates.
Reducing gross deficit to 8.4% of GDP, with a primary surplus standing at 2% of GDP
Targeting a decrease in deficit of budget entities to 91-92% of GDP
Increasing allocations for budget investments, those funded through State treasury, to 100 billion EGP to upgrade infrastructure and services.
·Developing social protection programs, orientation polices and increasing related financial support.
the preliminary financial statement for FY 2018/19 State budget, for the third year in a row.
The statement demonstrates the economic structure locally and abroad. It also highlights the presumptions and forecasts the new budget is based on, in addition to the social schemes and policies included in the State budget.
Previous implemented polices over past years and their results are also mentioned therein, with a medium term outlook for budget evaluations.
Finance Minister, Mr. Amr Al-Garhy, highlights that issuing the financial statement publicly proves the ministry's keenness on disclosing budget data and on motivating community participation as a means to pursue the right of each citizen to get informed with his State budget in its different preparation stages.
Such step pushed up Egypt's rank in the annual international transparence report and highlighted its continuous progress, noted the minister.
On his part, Mr. Ahmad Kouchouk, vice minister of finance for financial polices and institutional development, reiterated the Ministry's commitment to such data disclosing step in attempt to initiate community dialogue with all society categories as well as to get citizens' involved in decision making process before presenting the State budget to the Parliament.
It is important to highlight that the preliminary financial statement differs from the State budget financial statement. Namely, the former includes a simplified illustration of the government's program, with an emphasis on significant financial challenges and the main proposed financial and economic policies, whereas the latter presents to the legislative authority an elaborate demonstration of the budget's items and details.
The preliminary financial statement sheds light on the government comprehensive economic reform program.
It mainly aims to achieve stability in macroeconomic indicators so as to ensure the integration of all financial policies; and to gradually implement reforms of top priorities in order to handle current challenges and to develop the economic structure as a whole.
Moreover, the program seeks to boost productivity and competitiveness rates in fields of industry and exports, in particular; to implement a developed infrastructure and sustainable energy resources; and to set effective social protection schemes in conformity with the Sustainable Development Strategy (SDS) "Egypt Vision 2030".
The new budget 2018/19 targets economic growth at 5.8 % during 2018/2019, as well as a decrease in unemployment rate to 11 %, the statement revealed.
The gross deficit is planned to be reduced to 8.4 % of GDP, compared to 10.9 % in 2016/2017; and a primary surplus by 2% of GDP is targeted so as to decrease budget entities deficit to 91%-92% of GDP, the statement disclosed.
The statement demonstrates key reforms on terms of measures adopted to reprioritize public expenditure, to upgrade public financial systems such as the automation of all public transactions, to lay down an effective system for monitoring, assessing and managing financial risks, and to effectuate expenditure oriented to economic activities.
Priorities of reform policies on terms of revenues are also highlighted in the statement.
Policies focus on administrative and institutional reform in the taxation system, means of expanding tax base to boost proceeds, and ways to diversity general revenue resources so as to achieve a target increase in revenues by 21.6% in the preliminary budget draft for FY 2018/2019.
As revealed in the statement, Ministry of Finance is persistent in the new FY budget to continue its reform efforts starting since 2016, through carrying out its planned comprehensive economic reform program.
Observing a whole economic progress, supporting economic performance, boosting growth and utilization rates, increasing allocations for human resources development, expanding social schemes for the most vulnerable and underprivileged society categories, upgrading citizen-oriented services, and gradually substituting in-kind subsidies by financial cash support received by vulnerable categories, all are key objectives of the new State budget 2018/19.
Main social schemes applied on the new budget are: providing unconditional financial cash support such as Takaful and Karama, offering school nutritional meals, setting social insurance and low-income social protection plans, and applying the new comprehensive health insurance system, which aims to guarantee fairness among participants and be self-funded and sustainable.
Finally, the statement confirms the Ministry's commitment to reprioritize and effectuate expenditure, to follow more efficient and just distribution plans, to achieve the intended financial control as means to reduce public debt rates, to provide more future allocations for investments and to create more job opportunities.
The Ministry also plans to increase expenditure for overhauling public services, continuing major infrastructure projects - topped by public transportation services, water and sewage systems, slum development, human resources developments - and increasing allocations for education, health and scientific research.