Deputy Finance Minister for Fiscal Affairs Augustus Flomo has told a legislative hearing that an equivalent of US$472.1 million or 89 percent of the US$532,906,966.09 budget submitted for Fiscal Year 2019/20 will be mobilized domestically.
Appearing before the Joint Legislative Committee on Ways, Means, Finance and Budget Thursday, 1 August on Capitol Hill, Mr. Flomo says government has instituted a number of strategic revenue policy measures to be implemented to yield additional domestic resources.
The government recently submitted the Fiscal Year 2019/20 Budget in the tune of US$532,906,966.09 which is equivalent to LD$113,248,059,364.28 at a projected rate of US$1.00 to LD$212.51.
According to Minister Flomo, the current revenue output base is US$442.8 million with regards to domestic resource mobilization, but the implementation of strategic revenue policy measures is expected to yield additional US$22.2 million in domestic resource mobilization.
Minister Flomo explains that the Finance Ministry has projected to generate resources from key extractive sectors which include forestry, agriculture and mining, totaling US$60.7 million.
According to him, government is expected to generate resources from the service industry which includes banking and non – banking financial services, telecommunications, hotel and restaurant services, airline ticketing and reservation services, among others.Additionally, Minister Flomo discloses that government is expected to generate revenues from the general business sector.
He explains that this sector is mainly driven by trade activities, especially imports of consumables by large importers, retailers and wholesalers of petroleum products, fisheries, supermarkets and stores, pharmacies and drugstores, building materials and motor vehicles sales and repairs in the tune of US$116.2.
He details that public corporations and state – owned enterprises (SOEs) are expected to contribute US$36.9 million in all taxes and fees, citing the National Port Authority (NPA) and the Liberia Petroleum Refinery Company (LPRC) as key contributors.
According to him, the Civil Service contribution is expected to reach US$39 million on account of withholdings on salary wages, while ministries and agencies which render services for fees under administrative fees are expected to contribute US$16.2 million in revenues.
Minister Flomo explains further that the Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector is expected to contribute US$121.8 million in revenues.
He says this sector is comprised of the small taxpayers or small businesses, individuals who import goods from overseas, real property owners and motor vehicle owners, among others.
The Fiscal Year 2019/20 Budget is submitted with a revenue forecast of US$52.4 million.Mr. Flomo says the actual revenue to be mobilized domestically is an equivalent of US$ 472.1 million or 89% of the total resource envelope of which US$465.1 million is core revenue and US$70 million is the contingent revenue.
He notes that US$60.8 million or 11% constitutes external resources of which multilateral grants is US$20.8 Million. He concludes that concessional loan which is also a contingent element of the envelope is US$40 million.By Ethel A. Tweh–Edited by Winston W. Parley