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Thursday, July 25, 2024

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Renganaden Padayachy: It’s A Budget By The Government And For The People

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It is tradition now, one day after the budget, the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Dr Renganaden Padayachy, discussed with the media the 2023-2024.  During the question-and-answer session, the minster made it clear that the budget was prepared under the supervision of the PMO to improve the situation for everyone in the country. “It’s a budget by the government and for the people,” he stressed.

The Budget 2023-2024 focuses on the country’s economic, social and environmental resilience, and aims at enhancing the quality of life of all citizens and bringing equity.

Dr Padayachy also provided details concerning the progressive fiscal reform, which, according to him, will be in favour of every citizen as less taxes will be paid. Government, he observed, will also provide several allowances so that the guaranteed income of any person is at least Rs 15,000 on a monthly basis. These, according to him, will enhance the purchasing power of citizens.

As far as the high inflation rate is concerned, the Minister remarked that this is mostly due to the prevailing international situation, such as the Ukraine-Russia conflict which has impacted the prices of goods. He stated that the social resilience of our country had a positive impact on its economy. Sectors and jobs affected by the COVID-19 pandemic were preserved and an economic growth of 8% is targeted for financial year 2023-2024.

Budget 2023 - 2024 Discussion

Moreover, he indicated that the public debt was over 86% in June 2022, and this will decrease to 79%. Government’s midterm objective, he informed, is to reach 60% of public debt so as to be prepared and able to face eventual future shocks. This will be done through a high economic growth, he said.

Speaking about the Independence Scheme, through which each youth reaching 18 years will be provided with a grant of Rs 20,000, Dr Padayachy explained that this measure concerns some 15,000 young persons and will be ongoing for the years to come.

As far as productivity is concerned, he stated that this largely depends on the manpower available and on good working conditions. He also mentioned that some measures have also been put in place for enterprises to recruit the right and qualified manpower.

Furthermore, Minister Padayachy underpinned that one of Government’s objective is the production and supply of renewable energy. The ultimate aim, he said, is to utilise less petroleum products and produce more renewable energy which will subsequently lower the country’s expenditure as regards electricity.

Before concluding, Dr Padayachy reminded that one of the important measures concern children in the Republic of Mauritius who are diagnosed with cancer. They will henceforth benefit from financial assistance for the full costs of cancer care and treatment in foreign hospitals with the best expertise. This, he reiterated, demonstrates Government’s consideration for all citizens.

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