Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler will deliver the 2015-2016 Estimates of Expenditure and Revenue in the House of Assembly tomorrow. Below is an overview of Government’s planned spending:
It is estimated that Government’s total expenditure for the financial year 2015-2016, on the accrual basis, will be $4,321.7 million. Of the amount approved for the 2015-2016, $3,027.4 million represents current expenditure while $1,231.5 million represents capital expenditure and amortisation.
Wages and Salaries are expected to increase over the revised amount for 2014-2015 by $20.2 million or 2.7% to $763.3 million. The increase is due mainly to the payment of increments to public officers as legally required.
Expenditure on goods and services is expected to increase by $58.2 million from the revised figure for 2014-2015 to $446.5 million due to counterpart financing for a number of foreign funded projects by the IADB, CDB and USAID.
Current transfers are projected to decrease, declining by $39.8 million or 3.6% to $1,054.4 million as Government continues its fiscal consolidation programme.
The repayment of principal and interest on Government’s debt is expected to account for $1.7 billion, $200 million more than the revised projection of $1.5 billion in 2014
Accrued current revenue for the next fiscal year is projected at $2,555.5 million compared to $2,541.6 in financial year 2014-2015.
On the cash basis, there is a primary deficit of $35.6 million compared to a primary surplus of $95.3 million in the approved Estimates 2014-2015.
When amortization of $837.7 million is taken into account, the fiscal deficit on the accrual basis for 2015-2016 is projected at 6% of GDP.
The Estimates for the 2015-2016 fiscal year include provision for the following activities:
(i) A current subvention of $150.0 million is being provided to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital;
(ii) A subvention of $87.7 million and $9.1 million has been provided to the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. and the Barbados Tourism Product Authority respectively;
(iii) Invest Barbados has been allocated the sum of $10.5 million to carry out its operations;
(iv) $8.5 million has been provided to the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc. to carry out work on capital projects;
(v) Grant funding of $38.0 million is expected to be received as budgetary support and also to assist in carrying out the following programmes: Human Resource Sector Strategy and Skills Development; Storm Water Management Plan;
(vi) A current subvention of $26.6 million and a capital subvention of $2.4 million have been provided to the Sanitation Service Authority;
(vii) An amount of $12.0 million has been provided to the Barbados Drug Service for the purchase of drugs;
(viii) A current subvention of $71.3 million has been provided to the University of the West Indies;
(ix) A current subvention of $19.0 million has been provided to the Welfare Department;
(x) Skills for the Future programme under the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation has been provided with an amount of $15.5 million;
(xi) The Low Income Housing Project under the Ministry of Housing, Lands and Rural Development has been provided with $4.5 million;
(xii) $8.0 million for enhanced access to credit for small and medium-sized enterprises;
(xiii) $5.0 million for the preparatory work on the redevelopment of Sam Lord’s Castle;
(xiv) $17.4 million and $63.0 million to bring to account projects of the Barbados Water Authority’ funded by the IDB and the Canadian Commercial Corporation respectively; and
(xv) $5.5 million to complete the Lodge School under the Edutech program.