Cabinet passes SSP287 billion budget

Cabinet passes SSP287 billion budget
Information Minister Michael Makuei (photo credit: AFP)

The Council of Ministers in its regular sitting yesterday passed the 2021/22 fiscal budget estimated at SSP287.04 billion after the Minister of Finance Athian Ding Athian presented the draft bill.

Speaking to the press after the meeting, Minister of Information Michael Makuei Lueth said the proposed budget included revenues generated from both oil, non-oil revenues, and grants South Sudan received from other countries.

He said the 2021/2022 fiscal year budget is high in total and that it has been passed with some amendments in the figures.

“It was observed that in case of any shortcomings, the ministries and minister of finance are free to make supplementary budgets in areas which are not yet fully covered by the budget,” Makuei said.

He said the Minister of Finance would table the bill before the Reconstituted Transitional National Legislative Assembly for approval.

 “The minister of finance was directed to present the bill to the Reconstituted Transitional National Legislative Assembly for consideration,” Makuei said.

Makuei said the 2021-2022 financial year budget comprised a draft budget book and financial bill of 2021/2022.

“It was realized at the end that the budget was a good attempt because this is the first budget.  Last year we did not have [the] budget we were using the budget of 2019/2020 and this [year] we have come up with a budget. It is highly appreciated,” Makuei said.

In 2020, the government did not have a budget because of the delay in the reconstitution of the current parliament by parties to the agreement. Economic commentators and civil society activists have questioned the government for operating without a budget.

Meanwhile, Makuei said the Minister of Petroleum Puot Kang had briefed the cabinet about the ongoing crises in Port Sudan. But the Information Minister said it will not have an impact on oil production in South Sudan.

“The crisis in Sudan is a Sudan issue. They would allow us to continue exporting our oil normally because it has nothing to do with South Sudan,” Makuei said.