Last week Friday, the National Assembly approved the 2020 budget estimates which totaled $329.5 billion. Of this amount, sums totalling $183.2 billion have already been expended during the eight-month period from January to August 2020 by the APNU+AFC faction. It therefore means that the remaining $146.3 billion is budgeted to be expended in the remaining four-months.
According to Chartered Accountant and former Auditor General, Anand Goolsarran, this is a tall order for the new Government, given that the capital expenditure budget is $72.070 billion or 22 percent of the total budget.
In his most recent writings, Goolsarran said, “While it is not clear how much of the capital expenditure budget has already been expended, given the restrictions on expenditure during the first eight months of the year, most of the related works will have to be undertaken in the last quarter of the year.”
In view of the lengthy procurement lead time for the acquisition of goods, services and infrastructure works, the Chartered Accountant said that the task is going to prove an extremely challenging one for budget agencies.
As regards subvention agencies such as the Guyana Sugar Corporation, Guyana Power and Light and Guyana Water Inc, Goolsarran said it is important for the relevant authorities to bear in mind that all unexpended balance of funds transferred to undertake capital expenditure works will have to be returned to the Consolidated Fund at the end of the year. He noted too that the same applies to Central Government entities.