Govt. to present Vote on Account for 2025 instead of Budget: Siyambalapitiya

Monday, 10 June 2024 01:51 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

State Minister of Finance Ranjith Siyambalapitiya

State Minister of Finance Ranjith Siyambalapitiya yesterday announced that a Vote on Account will be presented for the fiscal year 2025, rather than a full Budget. 

“A new Budget will likely not be presented for the fiscal year 2025; instead, a Vote on Account will be submitted to cover expenses for the first few months of next year,” Siyambalapitiya explained. 

He said the decision aligns with the Government’s intention to implement the new leader’s manifesto following the Presidential election scheduled to be held by the end of 2024. As such, necessary allocations from the upcoming Budget will reflect the new administration’s policies.

“Traditionally, a Budget for the forthcoming year’s revenue and expenditure is presented in the last few months of each year. However, given the upcoming election at the end of this year, the Government has decided against presenting a new Budget. This approach allows the newly elected President or Government to propose a Budget based on their policy framework,” he explained.

Siyambalapitiya noted that since there is no opportunity to present a Budget proposal amidst potential Government changes, it is customary to seek Parliament’s approval for revenue and expenditure for the next few months via an interim account.

“We only have approval for income and expenses till 31 December 2024,” he said, highlighting this move as a positive indicator of democratic practice.

The Vote on Account is expected to extend till the end of March 2025. Consequently, the new Government elected in the forthcoming election will have the opportunity to unveil its policy statement and propose a fresh Budget for 2025.