Ministry of Finance expects deficit budget for 2017-’18 – Govt refuses to pay for ‘projects’

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KUWAIT CITY, Dec 25: Ministry of Finance is expecting the deficit in the budget for 2017/2018 to reach 4.6 percent without deduction of ten percent for the future generations’ fund, reports Al-Rai daily. This estimation has taken into consideration the possibility for changes in the monthly revenues and the expenditures to reach 100 percent of the estimated amount. It was also assumed that the deficit will reduce by 28 percent compared to the actual deficit announced by Ministry of Finance at the final accounting of the fiscal year 2016/2017.

The then announced deficit was KD 5.9 billion before deduction of ten percent for the new generations fund, and KD 7.2 billion after deducting ten percent. According to sources, Ministry of Finance has prepared a study based on two scenarios. The first presumes squandering to reach 100 percent of the estimated amount while the second assumes squandering to be 93.5 percent. Regarding the first scenario, the sources explained that the public revenues are expected to reach KD 15.2 billion and the expenditures KD 19.9 billion. The deficit then will be 4.6 percent before deducting ten percent (KD 1.5 billion) for the new generations’ fund.

This means the net deficit will be KD 6.1 billion. As for the second scenario, the revenues are expected to reach KD 15.2 billion and expenditures KD 18.6 billion. The ten percent of the new generations will not change from what was mentioned in the first scenario. However the deficit amount will change to KD 3.3 billion. In this case, the budget deficit will reduce by 77 percent in comparison to the deficit stated in the final accounting of the Financial Department of the state for the fiscal year of 2016/2017.

The government will not pay national labor allowance for microenterprise projects without the issuance of a relevant decision by the Cabinet and the Civil Service Commission (CSC), reports Aljarida daily quoting informed sources. They said Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor and the Manpower and Government Restructuring Program (MGRP) will hold a number of meetings to study the new mechanism for issuing work permits to owners of microenterprises. The sources affirmed that the issuance of work permits does not mean the owners will receive national labor allowance, stressing that not everyone who obtains work permits will receive that allowance. They said the owners of microenterprises represent a new class that needs to be studied well for at least one year in order to avoid repetition of mistakes related to fake labor file.

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