Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, will in a few hours present the budget for the first quarter of 2021, as stipulated by the law.
The Public Financial Management Act (2016) requires the Finance Minister to present the budget for the upcoming year to Parliament for approval before that year begins.
For instance, the 2020 budget was brought to Parliament in November 2019 and the 2021 budget is being presented just before 2020 ends.
However, because 2020 is an election year, with the possibility of a change in government, the law states that in an election year, the budget for the following year must be limited to just the first quarter – January to March.
The Expenditure in Advance of Appropriation, January to March, 2021, which the Minister will present to Parliament, is to prevent possible expenditure challenges in case of a change in government.
And then later, in March of 2021 (or generally in March of the year preceding an election year), whoever is Finance Minister will be expected to present the full year's budget.
What to expect
At the presentation on the floor of Parliament on Wednesday, October 28, 2020, the Finance Minister is expected to request the House to approve for government to spend about GH¢27 billion between January and March, 2021.
He is also expected to detail the projected revenue and expenditure between the same period.
Deputy Minister of Agric in Charge of Perennial Crops, Kennedy Osei Nyarko, told Journalists in Parliament that the presentation may cover the wages and salary and other minor expenditure of the government.
“I am not sure you are going to see any huge thing…like the construction of buildings. No that is not going to happen. It is going to be a normal recurrent expenditure of government,” he said.