Bulk of spending will be on public projects, amounting to 40% of $49 billion budget
Qatar has announced the largest budgetary estimates in its history for the current financial year, 2013 to 2014, it was announced on Monday.
A record $57.9 billion has been ear marked for public spending for the year, which is 18% higher than 2012’s budget of $49.02 billion, local media reports said.
The Qatari government has spoken out against fears that higher spending could cause a price rise, and that it would be vigilant about managing inflationary pressures through effective fiscal and monetary measures.
According to the budget, the bulk of spending would be on public projects, amounting to 40% of the total budget. Allocations totalled $20.5 billion compared to $17.05 billion over the last year.
The outlay for education has been upped 15% for this year, the budget revealed, with government sources pointing out that the country was moving towards a knowledge based economy.
“This is a key step ahead as the education sector now has a share of 3.8 percent in the country’s GDP,” the Minister of Economy and Finance H E Yousuf Hussein Kamal said, Qatar News Agency reported. It is important to note that the estimates make a large portion of the allocations for the education sector on research and development, he added.
The healthcare sector has also been accorded priority in the budget, with spending up by 13% over the last fiscal year. The Minister said the outlay would include spending on the Al Wakra Hospital, Sidra Hospital and building several specialised hospitals for women and children.