Cabinet approves 2.33-trillion-baht draft budget bill for 2012

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BANGKOK, 14 September 2011 – The Cabinet this week approved the proposed expenditure of 2.33 trillion baht for fiscal 2012 and was considering a cut in government payment of 60 billion baht a year paid as interest to the Financial Institutions Development Fund.

Finance Minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala said next year’s budget framework consisted of 1.84 trillion baht in regular spending, 384 billion baht in investment, 54 billion baht in compensation to the treasury reserve, and 51 billion baht in loan repayments.

The government’s revenue projection is estimated at 1.98 trillion baht, prompting a budget deficit of 350 billion baht which is equal to the current fiscal year’s budget. The Finance Minister committed that the government would try to control its expenditure within the specified limit. As for the inflation rate for 2012, he said an estimated figure had yet to be made after economic figures were more clear-cut.

He noted that the budget limit did not cover existing deficits left from the previous government and not yet been allocated with budgets. They include occupational remuneration worth 20 billion baht to be paid to medical personnel and teachers.

The Minister said the Cabinet took note during its weekly meeting that the annual interest worth 60 billion baht that the government was paying to the Financial Institutions Development Fund, or FIDF, of the Bank of Thailand was too high and should have been allocated for other development purposes. The meeting therefore entrusted the Ministry of Finance, the National Economic and Social Development Board and the Bureau of the Budget to jointly study ways to reduce the amount of payment.