Budget Committee votes to complete report by November 19

Budget Committee convenes for a meeting on November 14, 2020. (Photo/People's Majlis)

The Parliament’s Budget Committee has voted in favor of completing its review of the proposed state budget for 2021 and having the report ready by Thursday, October 19.

The deadline for the report was proposed by Alifushi MP Mohamed Rasheed Hussain during the Budget Committee meeting on Saturday. It passed with the unanimous consensus of the committee.

The MVR 34.79 billion budget for 2021 was presented to the Parliament on Monday, November 3. It includes a projected MVR 17.79 billion in revenue and grants, and a total expenditure of MVR 33.29 billion, resulting in an overall budget deficit of MVR 15.50 billion - which is 23 percent of the GDP.

While presenting the budget, Finance Minister Ibrahim Ameer said that the government expects Maldives’ debt to rise to MVR 82.8 billion by the end of the coming year.

Ameer said that though the debt will rise in the short run, it can be lessened in the medium run, by increasing GDP.

He appealed to the Maldivian people not be alarmed by the high debt, insisting that the government has a strong debt repayment plan and is not at risk of defaulting on loans.