The Appropriation Bill for 2012 was presented in Parliament by Prime Minister D.M. Jayarathne this afternoon.
The highest amount of Rs.229.94 billion (recurrent Rs.215.42 billion) has been allocated to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development. The Health and Education ministries have been allocated Rs.74 billion and 33.25 billion respectively. Rs.2.1 billion has been set aside for the Ministry of Mass Media and Information.
The debate on the second reading will be held for seven days from November 22 to 30, and the vote on the budget will be taken on November 30. The Committee Stage debate will be held for 17 days including Saturdays except on December 10, from December 1 to 21.. The vote on the third reading is scheduled to be held on December 21.
The total estimated expenditure for 2012 is to be Rs.2,220 billion, necessitating an increase in Recurrent Expenditure from Rs.1,029 billion in 2011 to Rs.1,109 billion in 2012, and the Capital Expenditure from Rs.938 billion to Rs.1,111 billion. The total revenue will be Rs.1,115 billion. Public Investment has increased from Rs.453 billion in 2011 to Rs.541 billion in 2012 in order to maintain the momentum in the growth rate of eight percent.
The government is aiming to reduce the budget deficit to 6.2 percent of GDP while maintaining an eight percent economic growth and an annual inflation between six and seven percent in the 2012 budget.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa as Minister of Finance and Planning will unveil his proposals to bridge the gap when the Budget proposal is presented in Parliament on November 21. (Source: News.lk)