The Jordanian parliament endorsed late on January 15 the state budget law for 2014, envisaging a 15% increase in the budget deficit to JOD 1.114bn (USD 1.57bn), the Jordan Times reported. A majority of 57 out of the 102 MPs who attended the session voted ‘Yes’ for the budget. The deliberations over the budget took three days, with 87 lawmakers taking the podium to debate the budget bill.
Total spending will rise 12.8% to JOD 8.096bn in 2014 and total revenue (including grants) will rise 12.5% to JOD 6.982bn. The budget forecasts a 3.5% GDP growth in 2014, up from a projected 3.3% last year. The CPI inflation will slow down to 4.2% in 2014 from an expected 5.9% in 2013, according to the new budget law.
Excluding foreign grants, budget proceeds will climb 11.6% to JOD 5.831bn in 2014. Foreign grants will increase 17.3% to JOD 1.151bn in 2014 from re-estimated JOD 982mn in 2013.
Capital spending will reach JOD 1.27bn in 2014, of which JOD 648mn (54% of the total) will come from the USD 5bn GCC five-year grant program designed for Jordan, according to finance minister Umayya Toukan. In 2014, the government will continue to subsidise bread prices and will enhance the social safety net.
The revised 2013 budget parameters forecast JOD 6.208bn in total revenue and JOD 7.176bn in spending, resulting in a JOD 968mn budget deficit.
MPs also approved the draft law for the 2014 budget of independent government institutions. Their revenues for the year are projected to reach JOD 710mn, while their expenditures will stand at JOD 1.83bn, with an expected deficit of JOD 1.19 billion.
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