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Lawmakers will try to cut state budgets to reduce deficit

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – During the opening session of the Burmese Parliament on Thursday, lawmakers will review state budgets for the 2012-13 financial year in hope of reducing the deficit.

Dr. Aye Maung of the Rakhine National Development Party.Dr. Aye Maung of the Rakhine National Development Party (RNDP) told Mizzima that they would try to control spending on some nonessential state projects.

“We must cancel unnecessary projects during this time of a financial crunch,” he said. “The projects which we must spend money on by borrowing loans and are not essential should not be done because Burma is a poor country,” he said.

The former SPDC government enacted a state budget for the 2011-12 financial year with a 2.3 trillion kyat deficit. A total of  2201.45 billion kyat was for the central government and 170.495 billion kyat was for state and regional governments.

A preliminary meeting on state budgets for the 2012-13 financial year was held in Naypyitaw on January 17, attended by lawmakers from the public accounts committee, and ministers from finance, national planning, construction, electricity, railway, defence and health ministries.

Finance Minister Hla Tun told the meeting that they reduced 50 billion kyat from the deficit for 2011-12 financial year, but he could not project in which sectors they could reduce the deficit in the proposed budget, Tin Nwe Oo of the National Democratic Force told Mizzima.

“Despite holding a meeting, they didn’t show us a detailed budget to us,” he said. “The finance minister just said the amount could be reduced this financial year. He didn’t give us the figures in detail but he showed some on a projector,” Tin Nwe Oo said.

Another participant in the meeting, MP Phone Myint Aung of the New National Democracy Party said that there would be a deficit also in 2012-13 financial year.

“We saw their figures in a computer presentation. There would be a deficit again in the next financial year but the Parliament has to deliberate on the new budget before passing it as a law,” Phone Myint Aung told Mizzima.

The current budget enacted by the previous government will end on March 3. The first budget of the new government led by President Thein Sein will start on April 1. MPs said they expected the new budget to be published in the government Gazette for public information.
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 25 January 2012 12:38 )  

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