Minister of Finance Simplex Chithyola Banda says the 2023/24 has been revised upwards from MK3.79 trillion to MK4.33 trillion.
Chithyola presented the 2023-2024 Mid-year budget titled “Time for reflection to Recover, Develop and Protect our Economy”,.
Chithyola Banda said that the total revenues and grants have been revised upwards from MK2.55 trillion to MK3.05 trillion and total expenditure has been revised upwards from MK3.79 trillion to MK4.33 trillion.
He added that the domestic revenue is projected to go up from MK2.24 trillion to MK2.41 trillion and the total domestic revenue, taxes will account for MK2.20 trillion while other revenues will amount to MK209.34 billion representing a 3.3 percent upward revision on tax revenues from the approved position.
“Madam Speaker, grants are projected to increase by MK335.35 billion from MK310.59 billion to MK645.94 billion by the end of the financial year, representing about a 108 percent increase. This is on account of the net increase of current grants from International Organizations and Foreign Governments following the approval of the ECF program by the IMF.
“Madam Speaker, total expenditure has been revised upwards from MK3.79 trillion to MK4.33 trillion following the exchange rate correction. The increases are estimated to occur in compensation of employees, social benefits, public debt interest, other expenses and use of goods and services,” he explained.
According to Chithhyola, development expenditure has been increased from an approved provision of MK831.0 billion to MK1.08 trillion. This is on account of an increase in both foreign financed projects and domestically financed projects due to the exchange rate correction and expected disbursements following the approval of the Extended Credit Facility with International Monetary Fund program.
He went on to say that the provision for wages and salaries has been revised upwards by MK80.05 billion from its approved amount of MK900.44 billion to MK980.49 billion. This is a provision to cushion civil servants from the Kwacha realignment .
On Interest Payments, the minister said the provision for interest payments on debt has increased by MK16.62 billion to MK931.48 billion.
The increase is on account of exchange rate correction for the foreign interest and a lower than projected interest payment on the domestic debt.
“Madam Speaker, the provision for Goods and Services has been revised upwards from the approved amount of MK547.56 billion to MK614.64 billion. The increase is mainly on account of increased commodity prices following the upward price adjustment of fuel.
“However, Madam Speaker, this upward revision has been moderated down following the Presidential order to observe the five months austerity measure period where fuel allocations have been halved and external travel frozen. This culminated in a saving of about MK4.2 billion which has been reallocated to developmental projects especially the Mega Farms,” said Chithyola.