Parliament set to pass 2019/2020 budget this afternoon

Government has planned to spend over Rwf2.8 trillion this financial year. (File)

Parliament will this Thursday pass the budget for the 2019/20 fiscal year, giving final approval to government’s planned expenditures.

Under the proposed budget for the fiscal year, which begins on July 1, the government has planned to spend slightly over Rwf2.8 trillion, reflecting an increase of Rwf291.8 billion compared to the over Rwf2.5 trillion allocated for the current 2018/19 revised budget.

The chairperson of the parliamentary Standing Committee on National Budget and Patrimony in the Lower Chamber of Parliament, Omar Munyaneza, told The New Times this morning that the House is likely to pass the draft budget law with minor changes to the one that was presented mid this month.  

Apart from the Rwf10.6billion allocated for post-harvest drying shelters of agricultural produce and Rwf7.1billion allocated for building new school classrooms and equipping them, which will be sent directly to districts instead of channelling it through the line ministries no major changes were made to the draft budget, he disclosed.

“We expect the law to be passed because execution of the new budget will start on Monday,” Munyaneza said.

Under the new budget, the Government has planned to sustain investments in development activities that are designed to transform the economy.

As he presented the budget to both chambers of Parliament, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Uzziel Ndagijimana, emphasised a deliberate focus on core objectives of the government’s first National Strategy for Transformation (NST1).

In line with NST1 key objectives, investments in the next fiscal year largely focus on projects and activities that will contribute to the creation of 213,198 decent and productive jobs.

Other activities to be funded include revision of secondary cities’ master plans and improving transportation infrastructure and services in urban and rural areas, improving air transport infrastructure, and promoting a knowledge-based economy by making the Rwanda Innovation Fund and other centres of excellence operational.

In the same line, more activities to promote industries to increase exports, scale up agriculture and livestock productivity, and increase access to electricity and water will receive significant funding.

Investments will also go into projects to improve access to quality education and healthcare, accelerate graduation from poverty by scaling up VUP to reach more households, and eradicate    malnutrition and stunting.

Efforts will also be made to invest in improving service delivery through scaling up services offered online and strengthening justice, law, and order.