Government has proposed to spend K53.14 billion in 2016 National Budget, representing 25.8 percent of GDP.
Presenting the budget in Parliament this afternoon, Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda says the budget will be financed through domestic revenues of K42.11 billion and grants from co-operating partners of K550 million.
Mr Chikwanda says financing will comprise K6.07 billion in net external financing representing 2.9 percent of GDP and net domestic borrowing of K1.75 billion representing 0.9 percent of GDP, with amortization projected at K2.66 billion.
He has allocated K727.9 million to the 2016 tripartite elections and the referendum, while external and domestic debt interests have been allocated K3.6 billion and K3.5 billion respectively.
Mr Chikwanda has allocated K717,013,167.00 to the Local Government Equalisation Fund,K536,237,121.00 to the Sinking funding and K100,000,000 towards awards and compensation.
He has further allocated K13.2 billion towards economic affairs and K3.1 billion for defence and K1.8 billion public order and safety.
Mr Chikwanda has also proposed to spend K4.4 billion to the health sector in order to ensure equitable access to quality health care.
He says this allocation includes K754 million for the procurement of drugs and medical supplies and K340.7 million for completion of ongoing health infrastructure development projects.
He adds that the allocation to the health sector also includes K73.8 million for the net recruitment of additional frontline health personnel and K6.3 million towards the establishment of the National Social Health Insurance Scheme.
The Minister has proposed to spend K9.1 billion on education and skills development, with K1 billion earmarked for various infrastructural projects in the sector, such as shools,universities and trades training institutes, while K217.8 million is for the recruitment of additional K5,000 teachers.
And Mr Chikwanda proposed to increase the capital allowance for implements, machinery and plant used in the generation of electricity to 50 percent from 25 percent.
This is to encourage the development of sustainable and alternative sources of energy.
He has also proposed to extend the 10 year period for carrying forward of losses for businesses generating electricity using hydro and thermal, to businesses generating electricity using other sources of energy such as wind and solar, but excluding wind.
And the Finance Minister has proposed to restructure the current withholding tax system on rentals to provide for a landlord to account for tax on rentals in circumstances where the tenant cannot withhold the tax, subject to approval by the ZRA Commissioner General.
He has also proposed to simplify the taxation of the insurance industry by removing Value Added Tax and introducing a levy at the rate of 3 percent on insurance premiums.
He has further proposed to increase the specific exercise duty rate on cigarettes to K200 from K90 per 1,000 sticks and introduce incentives to support local manufacture of cigarettes.
Mr Chikwanda has proposed to adjust upwards customs duty on selected categories of motor vehicles excluding buses and trucks.
He further proposed to introduce a surcharge of K2,000 on motor vehicles older than 5 years from the year of manufacture.
He says all the revenue measures will take effect from 1st January 2016, apart from measures relating to consideration fees on land which will take effect from midnight tonight.
BELOW IS THE FULL BUDGET SPEECH