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Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Government scoring big on fiscal consolidation

By Davison Vandira

THE Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) surpassed its revenue targets for September by over ZWL$11 billion, in a development attributed to the government’s fiscal consolidation stance.

The Second Republic inherited the twin evils of budget and trade deficits hence the implementation of fiscal consolidation measures such as broadening revenue streams and streamlining expenditure.

In a Post Cabinet media briefing in Harare this Tuesday, the Acting Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Honourable Jenfan Muswere confirmed an impressive performance by ZIMRA for September after the government’s move to broaden revenue streams.

“The 2023 National Budget Statement, Estimates of Expenditure and Revenue Measures have been produced and will be presented in Parliament on Thursday. Total revenue mobilized for September 2022 stood at ZWL$289.7 billion, surpassing the target of ZWL$278.5 billion by ZWL$11.2 billion.

“Under Budget Implementation, employment costs were paid on time, social benefit support amounting to a total of ZWL$82.5 billion (including ZWL$20 billion for BEAM) was disbursed, a subsidy of ZWL$4.5 billion was disbursed to ZUPCO, ZWL$18.9 billion was extended to the health sector, and ZWL$104.64 billion has been disbursed towards capital expenditure; and As at 20 October 2022, ZW$12.85 billion had been mobilized from the domestic market),” said Dr Muswere.

The fiscal consolidation programme has for the past four years followed a strict template where government expenditure has been dominated by capital projects, such as the construction of roads and dams, among others.

On the other hand, the treasury expanded its revenue capacities through the introduction of the all-encompassing Intermediate Money Transfer Tax (IMTT) and plugging tax evasion loopholes.

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