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Deficit Financing: MoFPED propose to borrow 2 trillion shillings to cover the budget shortfall!

Deficit financing, however, may also result from government inefficiency, reflecting widespread tax evasion or wasteful spending rather than the operation of a planned countercyclical policy. Where capital markets are undeveloped, deficit financing may place the government in debt to foreign creditors. In addition, in many less-developed countries, budget surpluses may be desirable in themselves as a way of encouraging private saving” (Encyclopaedia Britannica – ‘Deficit financing’ (25.08.2015).

In the original budget for 2019/20, the estimated domestic revenue of the state was about Shs. 20 trillion shillings, while the rest would be covered by close to Shs 10 trillion shillings in this manner the budget would cover the 40 trillion shillings. Today in Parliament, the debt trap, which was forecasted by several of Civil Society Organizations and others was proven.

Not only with the recent stipulation of the first Supplementary Schedule to the Budget Year of 2019/20, but also the lack of domestic revenue. This again proves the trouble with generating even half of the budget. As the Parliament are this week, either accepting borrowing 2 trillions domestically to boost the lack of domestic revenue. That means the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) and the state haven’t delivered on the promise. As the state was spending more and more, but not having the funds to do so.

Therefore, if the state does this. Than, Shs. 2 trillions are loaned to cover for the lack of delivery, the lack of preparations from the government and the added costs of the local government units created. The government knows this, but acts surprised that state have to invest in it. That’s why they have a supplementary budget for it and surely there will be more schedules before the end of the financial year.

Just look at this:

To address the projected revenue shortfall presented in paragraph 3 and the additional expenditure pressures presented under paragraph 9, Government requires a total amount of Euro 600 million equivalent to UGX 2,439 bn (Two Thousand Four hundred and Thirty-nine Billion) to finance part of the budget deficit” (Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED) – ‘THE PROPOSAL TO BORROW UP TO EURO 300 MILLION (EURO THREE HUNDRED MILLION) FROM STANBIC BANK (U) LTD AND EURO 3OO MILLION (EURO THREE HUNDRED MILLION) FROM TRADE DEVELOPMENT BANK TO FINANCE THE BUDGET DEFICIT FOR FY 2019/20, December 2019).

Given the revenue performance in the first two quarters of the FY 2019/20, the projected revenue turnout for FY 2019/20 is Shs 181575.18 billion, against the target of Shs 20,448.73 billion. This

reflects a projected shortfall of Shs 1,873.55 billion” (MoFPED, 2019).

In line with the above Section of the PFMA 2015, Ushs 437.631 billion representing 1.08% of the Approved Budget for FY 2019/20 has been authorized by the Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development as Supplementary funding. The purpose of this letter therefore, is to submit Supplementary Schedule 1 FY 2019/20 for consideration by Parliament. Please make arrangements for the Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development to lay the schedule before Parliament” (Keith Muhakanizi – ‘SUPPLEMENTARY SCHEDULE 1 FY 20I9/20’, 21.09.2019).

Rt. Hon. Speaker, in line with Section 25 (1) of the Public Finance Management Act, 2015 (as amended), I authorized and have accordingly submitted to Parliament Supplementary Schedule 1 amounting to Ushs. 437.6 billion for this FY” (MoFPED, 2019).

In line with the above, the budget for FY 20Lgl20 is facing the following constraints:

– URA shortfall in revenue of Shs 1,873.55 billion;

– Additional expenditure pressures of Shs. L,432.2bn

– Non-receipt of World Bank budget support funds of Shs. 375 bn

and

– Non-receipt of capital gains tax of Shs. 225 billion (USD 60

million);

10. The total revenue resource shortfall in the FY 2019/20 therefore amounts to Shs. 2,473.55 billion” (MoFPED, 2019).

We know this is serious, when the budget of the FY 2019/20 was 40 trillion. When 2,4 trillion of these have to get borrowed domestically. Even if 437bn of these are supplementary budget and wasn’t in the original budget of the FY. Still, the 2 trillion are a big slice to borrow and gain more loans. This is a debt trap, trapped by even more trap. As the tax-base isn’t growing as forecasted or as possible. By this estimation of the original budget, the domestic borrowing in this financial year would go up from about shs. 10 trillion shillings to about shs. 12 trillion shillings.

Because, with to much taxation, the funds are taken out of the circulation and isn’t spread as much. Not having the ability to generate more earnings for the citizens. They cannot spend, because they are actually paying taxes. That’s why you need sustainable taxes, which makes sense.

That’s why these loans are coming, because the state defaults on taxes, lacks the tax-base and doesn’t have the opportunity to gain the needed revenue. This the reality of the state. They will ask for the loans and add more debt. However, the government will not take responsibility for the acts done. The state are deficit financing and not generating revenue. That is why they are loaning even more debt. At a rate, which should worry anyone following it. Peace.

Deficit Financing: The art of fresh loans for the FY2019/20!

Deficit financing, however, may also result from government inefficiency, reflecting widespread tax evasion or wasteful spending rather than the operation of a planned countercyclical policy. Where capital markets are undeveloped, deficit financing may place the government in debt to foreign creditors. In addition, in many less-developed countries, budget surpluses may be desirable in themselves as a way of encouraging private saving” (Encyclopaedia Britannica – ‘Deficit financing’ (25.08.2015).

Just as it is soon a new Financial Year and also another budget. This time its for the FY 2019/20, the last one before campaigning. Therefore, the added strain on the economy will come, as the state funds are used for campaigns for the ruling regime. This is a steady act of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) and President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. We can expect more of it. That is the reason why the lack of fiscal responsibility is evident. As the state is within a year going from spending 32 trillion shilling into 40 trillion shillings. This without substantial rate or even more revenue to cover the added expenses. That means the state is more addicted to loans and grants.

Surely, the people should be aware, as the state has already gotten more loans and has to pay more in interests than before. With the new infrastructure loans and other development projects will hit the costs in future budgets. Even with Petro-Dollar, the state still has a lot of old debt to get revenue to cover. Especially, in the short-term window, as the grace periods of old loans will hit the budgets too. It seems like the state is only considering the debt-rate, but not the actual cost of the loans in itself.

That is why I will take one quote from the IMF, before showing what reports there was from Parliament, As they have voted for a new budget, which has escalating spending further without the revenue. That should be a worry. Take a look!

IMF May 2019:

Rising debt puts more strain on the budget as more resources need to be allocated for interest payments. One shilling paid for debt service is one shilling less going to a school or a health clinic. The current ratio of interest payments to revenue is comparable to what countries with high risk or in debt distress typically face” (IMF – ‘Uganda’s Economic Outlook in Six Charts’ 09.05.2019).

Rising debt:

The Committee noted that , the total public debt stock increased by 12.5 percent to USD 11.52 billion as at end December 2018 from USD 10.24 billion as at end December, 2Ol7 out of which domestic and external debt accounted for 33.5 percent (USD 3.86 billion) and 66.5 percent (USD 7.66 billion) respectively. The external debt stock increased by USD 0.78 billion to USD 7.66 billion by end December 2018 from USD 6.88 billion at end December 2017. The increase was mainly from China (25 percent) and World Bank (40 percent)” (REPORT OF THE BUDGET COMMITTEE ON THE ANNUAL BUDGET ESTIMATES FOR FY 2O19/20, P: 7, 2019).

Minority report on growing debt:

Worrying to note is the fact that huge portion of the budget resource is to be financed through borrowing. Out of the projected by domestic revenue of UGX 20.59 trillion (51%) while the budget of UGX 40.48 trillion, 9.44 trillion (48%) will be sourced from both domestic or external borrowing” (…) “It should be noted with concern that projected are almost debt expenditures in FY2019/20 equal to tax revenue (URA tax collection) of UGX 20.59 trillion” (A MINORITY REPORT ON ANNUAL BUDGET ESTIMATES TY 2019/20, P: 4-5, 2019).

It should be worrying how easily this budget was passed. How between last FY 2018/19 to FY 2019/20 the state could add 8 trillion shillings on the budgets. This without counting or even having the added revenue needed. This meaning the state has a giant deficit, which is about half of the budget. Where they have to get funding from outside sources, either by loans or grants. Lots will be loaned for and has to be paid for later with interests.

Certainly, this is a way of ensuring that for every shilling paid in loans, the state could have delivered state services to the public. That is even something the IMF was pointing out. This should be a worry for Ugandans, as the state is misusing the funds, loaning and borrowing on their future, without certainty of being able to repay these loans. That is what is shocking as the oil revenue has been postponed again and the lack of progression on the matter. This means the state is not hitting its targets, while taking up more loans on future revenue. Anyone should be worried about this, because who knows tomorrow and what if the economy totally tanks before the industry takes off. They are clearly living large on Deficits Financing and hoping the golden goose soon lays eggs. Since, they are continuing to fund their operations and the state with loans.

Than, the oil will be sold wholesale, as the state cannot manage to gain revenue and has to trade off everything. The risks it is taking is reckless. The spending is bonkers. That the state is initially a year before an Election Year is creating this huge deficit. Isn’t a sign of strength, but of weakness. As well, as having a blind faith, hoping for a narrow escape in the realm of Deficit financing. Peace.

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