The Maldives' parliament has scheduled the proposal of State Budget 2017 for this week Tuesday.
After two weeks’ hiatus, the parliament has scheduled only the budget proposal for Tuesday's agenda. With the new amendments brought to the parliament’s rules of procedure, the debate on the budget will commence on the day of proposal itself.
Meanwhile, the parliament's general committee has approved 22 minutes speaking time for each lawmaker during the state budget debate. When the floor opens for debate, each parliamentarian will have 15 minutes during the first stage and, after the research committee approves the budget, 7 minutes to debate on it.
The Constitution mandates the finance ministry to present before the beginning of each year the budget projecting the estimated revenue and government expenditures for the upcoming year, and statistics on government expenditures and deficit of the past year. This law calls for the parliament to finalise the state budget for the following year by December 31.
Speaking at the mass rally “Aslu” held on November 4 to assert President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom's faction of the divided ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) as the "true" PPM, the president announced that the state budget for 2017 will be MVR 27.5 billion..
This year’s state budget projected MVR 27.5 billion. The projected revenue from free aid for this year is MVR 22.8 billion, which includes MVR 16.8 billion from taxes, MVR 3.7 billion from other income, MVR 1.5 billion in free financial aid and an additional MVR 4 Billion from proposed revenue generating projects. The government had estimated the deficit for this year would be MVR 3.4 billion, which is 6 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). However, the deficit is expected to surpass the projected amount as the state revenue from taxes by September end was only MVR 11.39 billion.