Next budget hits 47tri/-

DODOMA: THE government plans during the next financial year (2024/25) to collect and spend 47.4tril/- in both recurrent and development expenditures, as well as financing next year’s local government polls and preparations for the 2025 General Election.

The Minister for Finance, Dr Mwigulu Nchemba said this in Parliament when tabling the guidelines proposals for the National Development Plan and Budget for 2024/25 fiscal year where he noted that internal revenue sources will account for 34.4tril/-, an equivalent of 72.6per cent of the total budget.

“Development Partners are expected to pump into the national budget a total of 4.3tril/- (equivalent to 9.0per cent), while the government is expected to borrow 6.1tri/- from the internal and 2.6tri/- from the foreign market,’’ said Dr Nchemba.

According to him, the 2024/25 budget outlook has considered the revenue collection trend, expectations on the growth of economy, state of the global economy as well as the various strategies the government is undertaking to increase internal revenue sources.

The finance minister further told the House that government spending was projected at 47.4tril/- out of which it will spend 12.1tril/- to service the government debt, salaries to public servants (11.8tri/-), as well as running government business (8.2tril/-).

Also, Dr Nchemba said 15.3tril/- would be spent in implementing development projects including free Primary and Secondary education and loans to students of higher learning institutions.

“The estimates have considered the demand to service the government debt, salaries for public servants, implementation of various completed projects, as well financing local government elections and preparations for the 2025 General Election,’’ added Dr Nchemba.

In the august Assembly yesterday, the government also unveiled the 2024/2025 National Development Plan which among other issues focuses on inclusive and export-led economy, with a view of eliminating poverty, creating jobs and stimulating export of goods that add value to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The Minister of State in the President’s Office, Planning and Investment Professor Kitila Mkumbo tabled the document in the National Assembly yesterday insisting that in meeting the desired targets, the government would put focus on value addition to key sectors including agriculture, fisheries, forestry and minerals as well as stimulating education and capacity building programmes at all levels, strengthening technological use especially ICTs, intensifying industrial production and strengthening provision of social services.

The minister noted that the country’s GDP is expected to grow by 5.2per cent in 2023 to about 5.8 in 2024 and that inflation rate is expected to maintain its single digit trend at an average of between 3.0 to 7.0 per cent.

“We also expect in the 2024/2025 to hike tax revenue by 12.4 per cent of the GDP from 11.9per cent that was recorded during the 2022/2023 fiscal year as well as having enough forex reserve that can help in procuring goods and services from outside the country for a period of not less than four months,’’ said the minister.

The general objectives of the plan according to Prof Mkumbo were among others to continue upholding the achievements obtained from the implementation of the past Five-Year Development Plan, continuing with efforts for self-sufficient food security, production and exports of goods outside the country through agriculture, fisheries, livestock, forestry and minerals, unlocking potentials of strategic minerals, deep sea fishing, green and digital economies.

In strengthening rural socio-economic development, the minister said that the government would among other things, empower small scale farmers so that they increase production by providing them with the best seeds and subsidised fertilisers as well as increasing irrigation farming projects.

“This is due to the fact that 65.1per cent of the country’s population live in rural areas and many production sectors depend on agriculture, but the pace of economic growth in rural areas is quite different from the urban areas,’’ added Prof Mkumbo.

According to him, this plan also targets strengthening provision of social services including education, health, water and electricity as well as enforcing expansion of road transport, water and railway infrastructure.

The minister said a short evaluation on the implementation of previous national development plans show various achievements have been reached in implementing various programmes including the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and the Mwalimu Nyerere Hydro-Power Project.

The evaluation also shows usage of quality seeds, fertilisers and irrigation agriculture has improved which has led to increased production of various food crops.

“Exports have also increased including provision of social services including education, health and water have also improved,” he said.

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