State Council refers the draft of State Budget 2021 to Council of Ministers

MUSCAT: The State Council on Sunday transferred the draft of State Budget 2021 to the Council of Ministers, along with recommendations of the State Council and Majlis Ash’shura.
The step was taken after the State Council discussed the report of its Economic Committee on the budget project and introduced amendments in light of the outcome of discussions.
The session, the second in the Council’s second annual sitting (7th Term), was chaired by Shaikh Abdulmalik bin Abdullah bin Ali al Khalili, Chairman of the State Council.
In its discussion of other topics of the agenda, the Council approved the minutes of its first ordinary session of the second annual sitting, 7th Term, and reviewed the report of the Secretariat-General on activities of the Council.
The chairman of the enhanced State Council’s Economic Committee delivered the committee’s report affirming that the tenths five-year development plan (2021-2025) and the draft state general budget for fiscal 2021 coincide with a significant stage in the Sultanate’s development march and constitute the stepping stone for the initial phase of the Oman Vision 2040 and they come on the background of exceptional conditions caused by a decline in oil prices and the COVID-19 pandemic and their impact on economic activities. These two factors also have direct effect on the general financial estimates, expectations of economic growth as well as their social implications.
The committee chairman underscored the importance of confronting the challenges facing the tenths five-year development plan and mitigating their impact on the national economy and the Omani citizens, noting that the National Programme for Fiscal Balance (Tawazun), being a medium-term plan, is the pillar on which the state general budget 2021 is based and add a strategic dimension and more flexibility in adapting to the changes in both revenues and expenditure.
The tenth five-year development plan targets to achieve five objectives: enhancing human development, preserving human capital, incentivizing economic activities in partnership with the private sector, supporting the small and medium enterprises and expanding the base of the economic diversification and developing the production mechanisms and programmes, developing macroeconomic environment and achieving financial sustainability in addition to achieving a balanced development in the governorates, the committee chairman said.
The committee came up with a number of recommendations regarding the state budget 2021 including affirming the importance of laying down conducive policies for enhancing the production base, activating the initiatives and activities that would boost the reliance on non-oil sectors and non-utilised resources, utilising the Omani potentials, enhancing revenues and drawing more investments and benefiting from the high-cost infrastructure, he concluded.