Tanzania to raise spending by 7 pc in 2017

BudgetPixTanzania plans to raise spending by 7 percent to 31.69 trillion shillings ($14.23 billion) in its 2017/18 (July-June) fiscal year, the Finance Ministry said in a draft budget proposal on Tuesday.

The economy grew an estimated 7 percent last year, matching 2015, Finance and Planning Minister Philip Mpango said.

Investors have been unnerved by unpredictable policies from the government of President John Magufuli while private sector credit growth has been hampered by a steep drop in the money supply and a spike in non-performing loans.

Tanzania, which is East Africa‘s second-biggest economy, has stepped up spending in recent years to build a standard gauge railway and new roads and expand its ports.

Mpango said in a presentation to members of parliament on Tuesday that the budget for the next fiscal year will continue in that vein.

“Some of the flagship infrastructure projects being implemented by the government include construction of a standard gauge railway network,” he said, adding the project will be allocated 800 billion shillings.

Mpango said that out of planned development expenditure of 11.8 trillion shillings this fiscal year, only 3.97 trillion shillings had been spent by February due to delays in receiving loans and grants from external sources.

The government said it was forced to hold back plans to tap international credit markets for financing of infrastructure projects over the past year due to high borrowing costs.

He said the government plans to lower the budget deficit to 3.8 percent of gross domestic product in the next fiscal year, from an estimated 4.5 percent of GDP this fiscal year.

Mpango said the government plans to borrow 6.15 trillion shillings from domestic sources.

Read full Budget Speech here

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