Substantial Increases for Capital Expenditure


Minister of Finance and Public Service, Audley Shaw, has said that the non-debt capital expenditure for the 2008/09 fiscal year is set at $44.648 billion, representing a $20.02 billion or an 80 per cent increase over the actual expenditure of last year.He also informed that the allocations for the Ministry of Education, National Security, Roads and Bridges as well as Agriculture have all seen substantial increases over previous years. Opening the 2008/09 Budget Debate in the House of Representatives, yesterday (April 10), Mr. Shaw said in regard to the Ministry of Education, of the capital budget of $6.046 billion last year, some $1.754 billion was for deferred financing obligations, adding that the full allocation of $4.354 billion is for expenditure this year. “Last year of the initial Capital A allocation of $9.096 billion for roads, $7.531 billion of this amount was used to pay outstanding expenses from previous years. The $7.531 billion is broken down as deferred financing, $3.386 billion; Petro Caribe $2.945 billion and bills carried forward of $1.3 billion,” the Minister said.
“This year the Capital A Budget allocation is $2.509 billion for actual expenditure. When combined with Capital B of $6.434 billion and discounting for deferred financing of $7.531billion last year, this represents an effective increase of 21 per cent over last year,” he added.
For Agriculture, the capital allocation has increased by $1.3 billion from $2.3 billion last year to $3.7 billion, representing a 56 per cent increase.
“Large allocations are made for revitalization of the dairy sub-sector, grant for rural development, national irrigation development project and sugar transformation project,” Mr. Shaw pointed out.
For National Security, the Capital A Budget of $2.5 billion for the fiscal year 2008/09 has seen a $1 billion increase over the revised estimate of $1.489 billion for 2007/08. This represents a $1.5 billion increase over the original estimate for the financial year 2007/08 of $994 million. “This substantial increase in resources will be allocated to acquire new police vehicles, repair police stations and purchase other vital equipment such as weapons, bulletproof vests and telecommunication equipment. A new long-awaited public mortuary will be constructed in Kingston in this fiscal year,” the Finance Minister said.

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