Senior Finance Minister Dr Ashni Singh has announced that the government has made its third withdrawal from the Natural Resource Fund in accordance with the Natural Resource Fund (NRF) Act 2021. This will be the final withdrawal for 2022.
The minister indicated that pursuant to Section 16 of the NRF Act 2021, US$207.6 million equivalent to G$43 billion has been transferred from the Natural Resource Fund to the Consolidated Fund to finance national development priorities.
It would be recalled that in May and July of this year, the government made withdrawals totalling US$400 million equivalent to G$83 billion.
This brings the accumulated withdrawals from the NRF for the year 2022 to US$607.6 million, equivalent to G$126 billion, in line with the approved amount in the 2022 Budget.
The NRF Act 2021 came into operation on 1st January 2022, and as part of the Budget 2022 process, Parliamentary approval was granted for a total of US$607.6 million to be transferred during the fiscal year 2022.
This transfer was made in accordance with the strengthened legal architecture of the NRF Act 2021. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Article IV Mission Report that was released in September 2022 commended the PPP/C Government on the amendments made to the NRF Act and highlighted:
“The NRF Act was strengthened recently. After a thorough review, and while restraining the spending of the oil receipts, the authorities amended the NRF Act in December 2021. The recent amendments set clear ceilings on withdrawals from the Fund for budgetary spending …’
The PPP/C Government will continue to work aggressively through sound and transformative investments of oil resources from the NRF, utilising these resources in a clear and transparent manner, to the benefit of present and future generations. (Ministry of Finance press release)