Friday, February 23, 2024 | Sha'ban 12, 1445 H
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EDITOR IN CHIEF- ABDULLAH BIN SALIM AL SHUEILI

Managing finances in difficult times!

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If government takes certain decisions to monitor financial dealings and keeps an eye on expenditure, it means that there are certain things which need to be looked into. If no measures are taken, it will damage the financial standing of the country. It will also shake its economic and political stature among the nations.


The Ministry of Finance has announced that the deficit in January 2021 alone amounted to be more than RO 370 million. This is despite the austerity measures taken by the state. The figure tells what we are supposed to do and double our efforts to achieve a desired balance between spending and revenues. This is what we hope to achieve by 2025. It requires us to understand the austerity measures taken by the government to achieve our goals. This is required for a better future.


The Ministry of Finance was very transparent when it revealed the financial situation of the country. This is a matter of high level of responsibility. The situation was put at the round table clearly so that everyone can see and understand it.


The announcement of revenues and expenditures is no longer a secret or an annual event. Now, it has become a monthly routine. During this period, all data, facts and figures are open for all. There are challenges and implications of certain actions and hopes. Whatever has come out of it tells as that now it is everybody’s responsibility to stand with the beloved nation. What we need to achieve will not be possible without sacrifices, patience and pains.


The general budget of the country recorded a fall in spending and revenues with an increase in the deficit in January 2021, compared to the same month last year. The revenues reached RO 384.4 million in January 2021 compared to RO 575.3 million in January 2020, which is a decline of 33.1 per cent. The spending has reached RO 755.6 million in January 2021 compared to RO 919.7 million in January 2020. It is a decline of 17.8 per cent. The deficit in January this year was RO 370.8 million compared to RO 344.4 million in January 2020, which is a decline of 7.7 per cent.‎


When we objectively look at the deficit of RO 370.8 million in January this year and divide it by 30 days, we find that it is more than RO 12 million per day.‎


This calculation makes the picture clear for everyone. It tells the extent of the effect on the general budget of the state. These are facts which help us in our search for ways to bridge the deficit gap between spending and revenues, how to balance them and what measures should be taken to deal with the situation.


Therefore, the government is continuously taking measures to reduce the deficit, to bring it to zero by the year 2025 and even convert it into a surplus through the established procedures.‎


Data indicates that spending in January 2021 decreased by RO 164 million compared to the same month in 2020. This is the result of a practical transfer of ownership of companies and government investments from the Ministry of Finance to the Oman’s investment apparatus. This is in addition to the decrease in current expenditure of government agencies by RO 41 million in January. It is a positive development in pursuit of reach to a breakeven point in the coming years. This became possible because of the cooperation of all parties and individuals. At the time when there are lot of difficulties, the financial management is not an easy task. We are a country with lot of big commitments and limited resources.


The government is working hard to implement economic stimulus plans and address problems caused by current economic and health situation in the country and the entire world.


We are hopeful that everyone will understand the objectives set by the government and extend their hands to support it. There are thorns everywhere in the pursuit of achieving these objectives, but the result will be certainly what we are waiting for.


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