Budget Policy Statement 2019
What is a Budget Policy Statement?
“A budget policy statement is a government policy document that sets out the broad strategic priorities and policy goals that will guide the National Government and the County Governments in preparing their budgets both for the following financial year and for the medium term..”
“This document is expected to improve the public’s understanding of Kenya’s public finances and guide debate on economic and development matters; – Dr. Kamau Thugge
The National Treasury reported in the Budget Policy Statement that towards the end of 2018, initiation of new projects was frozen until the projects under the Big Four Agenda were completed.
On tax automation, the national treasury plans to invest on modern technologies to enhance revenue collection.
CONTENT OF BPS 2019
a)State of the economy
b) Projection of government revenue, expenditures and borrowing for the next financial year and over the medium term;
c) Sector ceilings for the National Government including those of the judiciary, parliament and indicative transfers to the Counties;
d) Fiscal responsibility principles and financial objectives over the medium term including limits in total annual debt;
e) Statement of specific risks;
Revenue collection for the first five months grew by 13.5% compared to the same period in 2017/2018.
According to the BPS 2019, the national government is planning to focus on reducing budget deficits and accumulation of debt.
According to the National Treasury, this will be achieved through fiscal consolidation which is ongoing. To finance the deficit in 2019/2020, domestic borrowing is projected at Ksh. 271.4 billion. This is the money which will be raised through bonds and government securities.
A budget ofKsh. 5 billon will be allocated towards the Emergency Fund also referred to as Contingency Fund.
On food security the national government is planning to allocate resources for expansion of irrigation schemes and increase access to agricultural inputs. Small scale farmers will be supported to conduct their farming without a hitch.
The national government predicts that they will create approximately 600,000 direct and indirect jobs through agricultural activities.
In order to stop over reliance on rain fed agriculture, the national treasury has proposed that the national government will develop 85,000 acres of land to increase food production.
Universal Health Coverage (UHC)
Universal Health Coverage is one of the “Big Four Agenda” and the National Treasury has reported that the national government has developed the guiding documents for UHC. These include: the UHC pilot framework and the UHC coverage roadmap.
The national government is currently configuring the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF). The pilot of UHC is currently happening in Nyeri, Machakos, Isiolo and Kisumu.
The residents of the four counties are expected to receive free health care services.
The lessons learnt from this pilot project on UHC will be used as a learning experience for the full rollout in the next 18 months.