By Islam Zaid
Sources within the Ministry of Finance revealed that responsibility for the new budget for the 2012-2013 fiscal year was transferred to the Military Council once again after it assumed legislative powers following the dissolution of parliament.
The sources expected that the budget will be approved within a week as there will be no more discussions of its various items. The budget was previously discussed by the Military Council before it was sent to parliament and, as such, it requires no further treatment.
The sources revealed that the Military Council entered a number of amendments into the budget while refusing to disclose them until the budget is approved.
Starting tomorrow expenditure will cease in all government agencies and that an inventory and accounting of bills will be taken in order to end all financial operations by the end of the current fiscal year. The sources also said that all requests for new disbursements will no longer be received starting from the day after tomorrow, pointing out that all expenditures will be accounted for and submitted at the end of the current fiscal year with the final accounting.
The sources clarified that the draft budget maintains all the same appropriations and that total expenses equal EGP 635.4bn, compared to EGP 594bn in the previous fiscal year, a growth of 7%. Total expenditures are estimated at EGP 533.4bn, compared to EGP 490.6bn, a growth of 8.8%. Wages account for 26% of total public expenditures, or EGP 136.6bn, an increase of EGP 19.1bn from last year’s budget, a growth of 15.3%. Subsidies and social services came to EGP 145.8bn to account for 27.3% of total public expenditures.
Most of the subsidy allocations are focused on food rations, with a value of EGP 26.6bn in order to provide the necessary support required for bread production, either on the side of local wheat producers or importers.