Govt releases Shs 52.7 trillion 2023/24 budget

by Business Times
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The Government of Uganda has released the financial year 2023/24 budget of Shs 52.7 trillion that entails government revenue mobilisation and spending plans for the next 12 months.

The Minister of Finance and Economic Development Matia Kasaija, while delivering the budget at Kololo Ceremonial Grounds in Kampala on Thursday, June 15, 2023, said the overriding goal of the ruling government is to achieve socio-economic transformation for the benefit of all Ugandans and thus improve their lives.

The minister also said the government will focus on enhanced fiscal discipline through enhancing revenue collection, the rationalization of public expenditure and ensuring long term debt sustainability.

“The Budget for next Financial Year 2023/2024, therefore, has been prepared to advance this strategic mission. Consequently, the theme of the budget has been retained as: “Full Monetisation of Uganda’s Economy through Commercial Agriculture, Industrialisation, Expanding and Broadening Services, Digital Transformation and Market Access”,” he said.

The main vehicle for improving household incomes (wealth creation) in the 2023/2024 national budget is the Parish Development Model (PDM), which has been allocated Shs1.1 trillion.

“Since the launch of the PDM in February 2022, a total of Shs. 590.2 billion has been disbursed to all the 10,459 parishes nationwide, translating into Shs. 50 million per parish. The balance will be disbursed by end this month. Next financial year, the Parish Development Model has been allocated Shs. 1.1 Trillion,” he said.

The PDM will be complemented by other initiatives such as Emyooga which has been allocated Shs. 100 billion where as Shs. 60 billion has been allocated for skilling the youth in next financial year.

Government has allocated Shs. 2.2 trillion for food security, irrigation, climate change mitigation, value chain development, agricultural research and disease control, among others.

“Madam Speaker, during this financial year, additional funding amounting to Shs. 110 billion was provided for food security interventions in Government institutions with farms including the UPDF, Uganda Prisons, Ministry of Agriculture, the National Agricultural Research Organisation and the National Agricultural Genetics Resource Center and Databank,” he said.

Uganda has increasingly been recognized as a tourism destination and is ranked by CNN as one of the top 10 best tourist destinations in the World. In order to promote domestic tourism,  Hospitality standards will be enforced through licensing, grading and classification of tourism facilities. Shs. 249 billion has been allocated for the promotion of Tourism.

Interventions that build human capital which include health, education and safe water have been allocated Shs. 9.6 trillion.

“In addition, the Government together with the World Bank are implementing the US$ 500 million Uganda Intergovernmental Fiscal Transfer programme to construct health centers III and IVs, seed secondary schools, and micro-scale irrigation facilities in Local Governments that do not have these facilities,” said Kasaija.

He revealed that Shs. 22.6 billion has been povided to clear outstanding arrears for medical interns and senior house officers for the financial year ending June 2023.

Next financial year, government plans to complete 16 national road projects including Atiak-Laropi, Moroto-Lokitanyala, Kawuku-Bwerenga, Namugonde-Bugiri, Nsambya-Mukwano, the Kampala Flyover and Rushere Town and Kyamate Access roads.  

ALSO READ: 2023/24 budget to prioritise wealth creation

An allocation of Shs. 4.5 trillion, representing 13.3% of the total budget, has been budgeted for road maintenance and construction, railway development and rehabilitation, water and air transport development.

“Of particular significance, an allocation of Shs I billion has been provided to each District, City and Municipality for road grading, murram and compacting. In total, Shs 176 billion has been allocated for this purpose,” he said,

For Power generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure according to the minister have continued to expand.

“Generation capacity increased to 1378.1 MW as at March 2023 from 1,343.9 MW in March 2022, an increase of 34.3 MW. With the commissioning of the Karuma Hydropower Project planned for September 2023, generation capacity will increase to 1978 MW. Shs. 1.3 trillion has been allocated for Electricity interventions,” he noted.

Next year, WiFi will be deployed to 820 locations, targeting schools, hospitals, markets in the selected sub-regions as an allocation of Shs. 192 billion has been provided to accelerate digital transformation.

“The Greater Kampala Metropolitan Area network will be upgraded to monitor service provision over the national backbone infrastructure. We will also digitally transform public service delivery by connecting all essential services, such as schools, hospitals, tourism sites, and the police to the national backbone,” he explained,

budget 2023/24
Minister Kasaija at the at Kololo Ceremonial Grounds in Kampala(PHOTO/Courtesy)

Government has also allocated Shs.447 billion to fast track the development of petroleum resources next financial year

Security, governance, the legislature and the administration of justice have been allocated, Shs. 9.1 trillion next financial year, up from Shs. 8.1 trillion this financial year

In order to live within our means, we have reduced consumptive expenditure. During next financial year, there will be no purchase of new vehicles for political leaders and public officers except for hospital ambulances, medical supplies or distribution, agricultural extension services, security and revenue mobilization.  Travel abroad has also been restricted to statutory functions and for critical legal and resource mobilization functions. We will also regulate expenses on workshops and seminars.

Domestic revenues for FY 2023/24 are projected to amount to Shs 29.7 Trillion, of which Shs 27.4 Trillion will be tax revenue and Shs. 2.3 billion will be Non-Tax Revenue. This represents a revenue effort of 14.3% of GDP.

Domestic borrowing amounts to Shs3.2 trillion. Budget Support accounts for Shs2.8 trillion. External financing for projects amounts to Shs.8.3 trillion of which Shs5.3 trillion is from loans, and Shs3 trillion is from grants.

Domestic Debt Refinancing will amount to Shs  8.4trillion.

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