The Parliament’s Budget Committee on Thursday approved a MVR 49.8 billion budget for 2024 after making significant adjustments to allocations for key housing and infrastructure projects. These adjustments represent an additional MVR 306 million over the initial proposal of MVR 49.5 billion submitted by the Finance Ministry. 

The revisions align with the new government’s vision and accommodates changes in the administration and government ministries.

Key alterations in the budget include a unanimous approval for MVR 43 billion towards the domestic budget expenditure of offices. The reallocation of funds also impacts several new ministries and independent institutions. Notably, the Public Sector Investment Programme (PSIP) projects have seen an increase of MVR 248 million, bringing their total allocation to MVR 8.8 billion. The budget committee has also allocated MVR 600 million for direct subsidies.

In a strategic realignment of project funding, the committee reassigned resources initially designated for the Fushidhiggaru Lagoon reclamation project, a cornerstone of President Mohamed Muizzu’s electoral commitments. The MVR 400 million previously allocated for this endeavour has been strategically redirected to other initiatives.

The 2024 budget is characterised by a total expenditure of MVR 49.8 billion against total grants and revenues of MVR 33.5 billion. This results in a budget deficit of MVR 16.3 billion. The budget includes MVR 17.2 billion in borrowings and MVR 6.9 billion in foreign budget support. Additionally, the government plans to raise MVR 771 million by selling green or blue bonds abroad.