Higher allocation for Budget 2018

By: Lydia Nathan/Bernama Pix

The government allocates RM280.25 billion for the country’s expenditure, an increase in allocation as compared to RM260.8 billion in the previous budget.

“A sum of RM234.25 billion is allocated for (OE), while RM46 billion for Development Expenditure (DE). This allocation does not include Contingencies which amounts to RM2 billion,” Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Razak said when tabling the 2018 Budget today.

A sum of RM79.1 will be spent on emoluments from the allocated sum of RM234.25 billion for operating expenditure (OE,) based on the Economic Report 2017/2018.

Emolument was expected to increase according to the report on the back of two salary increments, implementation of minimum wage and improvement that began in July 2016.  This however will be maintained by keeping the size of civil service at 1.6 million.

The OE was expected to increase to cater for higher spending requirement which include supplies and services, estimated at RM 33.62 billion due to maintenance charges from development projects and debt and service charges which are estimated at RM30.8 billion.

Retirement charges are estimated to increase to RM24.5 billion due to the implementation of minimum pension payment that started in July 2016.

Subsidies and social assistance are projected to increase to RM26.5 billion and grants to statutory bodies are estimated to decrease to RM13.1 billion due to rationalisation of grants particularly to entities with high accumulated reserves.

Of the total grants, RM7.7 billion will be allocated for public universities and teaching hospitals.  

Meanwhile, Najib said the under the development expenditure, the economic sector will receive the highest share of RM26.34 billion.

This is meant for infrastructure, entrepreneurship and industrial development. Additionally, it will also be used to enhance research and development (R&D) and improve public utilities.  

“The social sector is allocated a sum of RM11.72 billion. Meanwhile, the security sector will be allocated a sum of RM5.22 billion and the general administration RM2.72 billion,” Najib said.