Fiscal 2021 disbursement faces one-month delay

Fiscal 2021 disbursement faces one-month delay

Disbursement of fiscal 2021 budget is expected to be deferred by only a month and will not affect public investment, says finance permanent secretary Prasong Poontaneat.

Deferment of the law on fiscal 2021 budget from Oct 1 will have no impact on public investment, Mr Prasong said.

He noted that the government still managed to implement public investment projects after a nine-month delay in fiscal 2020 budget disbursement.

"The delays [in fiscal budget disbursement] for two fiscal years are an uncontrollable factor," he said. "The reason for the delay in the fiscal 2021 budget is because of the approval process in the House of Representatives, but I do not know whether the political turmoil is causing the delay.

"I insist that this won't affect government spending on disbursing money to the grassroots and public investment, as the terms of reference [for public investment] of contractors will be due on a similar timeline as the delay [in fiscal 2021 budget]."

The government still has 300 billion baht in its treasury reserves, and revenue collections for government agencies for fiscal 2020 are still in line with the projections, though there are some departments reporting lower-than-expected revenue collection, Mr Prasong said.

Regarding a delay in state welfare given to the elderly and the disabled, normally due on the 10th of every month, this was only a week's time and the reason was that the government's calculation of the number of elderly did not match the existing number and budget allocation, he said.

For the 45-billion-baht co-pay policy, the measure is under consideration by the cabinet and the Finance Ministry will be in charge, with details expected to be introduced in late September, Mr Prasong said.

It was reported earlier that 260,000 new graduates nationwide were expected to be hired for 12 months, from Oct 1 this year to Sept 30, 2021, with the government paying 50% of their monthly salary based on their highest education level but not exceeding 7,500 baht per person.

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