Parliament signs off on MVR 34.9 bln budget for 2021

The budget for 2021 was approved by the Parliament on Monday. The budget of MVR 34.9 billion was approved with 68 members voting in its favour. Only one lawmaker voted against the budget.

The Finance MInistry originally proposed a budget of MVR 34.7 billion for the upcoming year, and estimated a revenue of MVR 17.8 billion including grant aid. While a recurrent expenditure of MVR 33.3 billion was projected, the budget proposed for 2021 had an overall deficit of MVR 15.5 billion.

Although several members voiced their concern on the budget and the projects planned for the upcoming year amid a global pandemic, the budget review committee recommended to add additional projects, and to increase the budget allocated to independent institutions and government offices. Some of the projects that were added by the committee include projects such as the development of sports fields and classrooms.

The projected revenue was also revised by the committee from MVR 17.8 billion to MVR 21.1 billion. The committee also allocated an additional budget of MVR 2 billion for the upcoming local council election.

The committee signed off on a total budget of MVR 34.9 billion, with the deficit decreased to MVR 12.3 billion with the new revisions.

The recommendations in the budget report were also approved by the parliament. The recommendations include sharing with the Parliament the details of any loans issued to the state against guarantees provided by the state on a quarterly basis.