2018 Budget approved
The Government’s fiscal spending for the year 2018 has been given the green light by the National Assembly. The sums were approved by the National Assembly on Friday, December 15, 2017, after Appropriation Bill 2017, Bill No. 15 of 2017 was put to the House for vote.
The 2018 spending provided over 441.9M for the delivery of services in Education, $33.3B in Health, $19.4B in Agriculture, $30.7B in Public Security and $35B for Public Infrastructure interventions.
It also supports the rolling out of several measures such as the Exemption of Excise Tax on vehicles, principally designed to accommodate LPG gas; the exemption of machinery and equipment from the payment of Customs duties to set up 75 refilling stations for such vehicles; and amnesty to all delinquent taxpayers-corporation and individuals – who are outstanding in the filing of true and correct tax returns and payments of their true and correct taxes.
It provides for Minimum Personal Allowance of $720,000 to be given in full, regardless of whether a person works for the whole year or a part of the year; as in the case of public sector employees, a tax-free vacation allowance to be given to private sector employees up to a maximum of one month of the employee’s base salary and an increase of Old Age Pension to $19,500 and Public Assistance to $8,000
Also covered is the removal of the VAT on the provision of all educational services; and on the supply of logs and rough lumber to the sawmilling industry, and from vehicles that are less than 4 years, which are used to transport more than 21 persons, with effect from January 1, 2018.
Other projects to be realized with the passage of the budget include:
- The Lethem airstrip upgrade
- Guyana’s first fire boat
- Three new water treatment plants
- Agriculture centre in Lethem
- Incubators and accelerators in Region Five and 9
- E-service in Hinterland communities
- A new bauxite mine in Bonasika
- Construction of centre for the creative arts
- 14 news pumps
- New police station at Parfaite Harmonie
- Four new monuments
Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan on Monday, November 27 tabled the “the Journey to the Good Life continues,” 2018 National Budget totalling $267.1B. Budget 2018 is a 7.1 percent increase over the 2017 Budget totalling $250B that was presented to the National Assembly on November 28, 2016. (Department of Public Information)