By Aja Dahaba
The 2019 Budget stands at 17,095,363,822 (Seventeen Billion and Ninety-Five Million, Three Hundred and Sixty- Three Thousand, Eight Hundred and Twenty-Two Dalasi).
The country’s Finance Minister and Economic Affairs minister Hon Mambury Njie on Friday presented the2019 budget before the members of the National Assembly.
In the fiscal front, he explained that the preliminary estimates of government fiscal operations during the first nine months of 2018 indicate a decline in the fiscal position of government. He said the revenue and grants declined by 29 percent from D10.9 billion in the first nine months of 2017 to 7.8 billion in the same period of 2018.
He added that this decline is mainly due to the 78 percent decline in the grants, which was large enough to offset the 16 percent increase in domestic revenue between the two periods under review.
Minister Njie asserted that the total Revenue and Grants for 2019 is estimated at D25.3 billion (28.8 percent of GDP), a 28 percent growth from 19.8billion (25.3 percent of the old GDP) budgeted in 2018. He added this is mainly due to an increase in both domestic revenue collection and grants inflows compared to the budgeted amount of 2018.
“Non- tax revenue is anticipated to register a marginal increment, with an estimate of 1.0 billion (1.1 percent of GDP) in 2019, compared to budget of D0.9 billion (1.86 percent of the old GDP) in 2018.
The Finance Minister said the total expenditure and net lending is projected at D28.7 billion (32.8 percent of GDP) in 2019 from D20.8 billion budgeted in 2018, representing an increase of 38.4 percent – the bulk of which is budgeted for current expenditure.
Expenditure on personnel emoluments is projected to increase from D2.8 billion in 2018 to D4.1 billion in 2019, mainly due to the fifty percent salary increment for civil servants that will be implemented in 2019 he added.
This was tabled before the National Assembly in Banjul, and it covers the period of 1st January 2019 to 31st December 2019.
By Aja Dahaba