Earthquakes, fuel crisis

KIGALI - The 2008 national budget worth Frw607.5 billion is set for review to cover unanticipated overheads caused by the recent earthquake and fuel crisis.
Musoni says recent quakes and fuel crisis will affect this year’s budget.
Musoni says recent quakes and fuel crisis will affect this year’s budget.

KIGALI - The 2008 national budget worth Frw607.5 billion is set for review to cover unanticipated overheads caused by earthquake and fuel crisis that hit the country early this year.

Finance Minister James Musoni revealed this on Friday at his ministry’s headquarters in Kigali shortly after signing a pact with World Bank for $70m (about Frw37b) grant to support the government budget for poverty alleviation.

“We have to review the national budget to cover the unpredicted expenditures,” said the minister, adding that people affected by last month’s earthquakes need aid, and that more fuel has to be stocked.

The earthquakes that hit the country in February on Friday left at least 40 people dead and others homeless.

Prime Minister Bernard Makuza announced last month that the quakes which struck in the Western Province destroyed an estimated Frw5b worth of property.

The post-election violence in Kenya triggered a fuel crisis in the region and Rwanda in particular, with a litre of fuel now going for Frw746.

Musoni retained his cabinet post in the Friday reshuffle which saw the position of state minister for economic planning in the Finance ministry wiped off the cabinet list.
The World Bank grant will assist the government in the implementation of the Economic and Development Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS).

It centres on the consolidation of the progress made in social sectors under the first Poverty Reduction Strategy Programme (PRSP) which changed into the five-year EDPRS.

Musoni said that negotiations were also between the Government and the European Union (EU) for the latter to support the national budget with a Euro300 million grant. force budget review

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