Sunday, March 3, 2024

Treasury releases K11.17 billion to finance developmental programmes and public service delivery

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The Treasury released K11.17 billion to finance developmental programmes and public service delivery.

Out of the total amount, K1.48 billion was for transfer payments, subsidies, and social benefits, of which K585 million went towards the payment of pensioners under the Public Service Pensions Fund and K1.45 billion went to financial and non-financial assets, while K1.2 billion financed various government programmes.

Secretary to the Treasury Fredson Yamba says for subsidies and agriculture sector social-benefit programmes, the Treasury released a sum of K318.5 million of which, K185.5 million was channelled towards the on-going construction of maize-grain storage facilities under the Food Reserve Agency, K103 million to the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) to finance activities related to the vulnerable but viable farmers and, lastly but not the least, K30 million was released for the Food Security Pack Programme.

“In July 2020, K593 million was released towards social benefits, of which, K585 million was for the payment of pensioners under the Public service pension fund whilst K8 million went towards Social Cash Transfer programme. K900 million was released to recapitalize the National Savings and Credit Bank (NATSAVE). Through this capital injection, NATSAVE will meet the minimum capital requirements set by the Bank of Zambia, enabling it to access the Bank of Zambia K10 billion Medium Term Refinancing Facility (MTRF),” he said.

“In the month under review, the Treasury released K889 million towards transfers and subsidies. Under the transfer’s category, K270 million was channelled towards supporting operations of Grant Aided Institutions such as Road Development Agency which got K9.8 million, Food Reserve Agency K6.3 million, and National Assembly K5.5 million.”

He also disclosed that K97 million local government equalisation fund was also released to support the operations of local authorities.

Mr. Yamba stated that in line with Governments commitment to reduce indebtedness, a sum of K3.2 billion was released towards the payment of both domestic and external debt.

“The Government, in July 2020, spent K3.5 billion on the public service wage bill. In addition, K11 million was channelled towards chief’s subsidies and retainer’s wages,” he added.

Giving an update on the 2021 national budget preparation process, Mr. Yamba indicated that a considerable proposal submission period ending on 31st July, 2020 was set so that all citizens, including the youth, women groups, the private sector, and all other stakeholders and interest groups, participate in the formulation of the 2021 Budget.

“Although the notice for submissions has lapsed, proposals are still welcome for the period until Wednesday 12th August 2020. This is to ensure that citizens, including the youth, women groups, the private sector, and all other stakeholders and interest groups that may feel left out in the preparation process, are included through receipt of their submission of tax and non-tax policy proposals for the 2021 National Budget,” he said.

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