Finance Ministry: Budget revisions did not breach ceiling


(The Star) – The revisions to the 2015 Budget announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak did not breach the ceiling set for allocations that were approved by Parliament, the Finance Ministry said on Friday.

“The special adjustments announced do not involve any additional expenditure,” said the Ministry in a press statement, adding that this was why there was no need to re-table the 2015 Budget in Parliament.

“The deficit for 2015 was initially estimated to be approximately RM35.7bil or 3% of Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP). However, due to the reduced income as well as due to revised GDP growth projections for 2015, the deficit is now estimated to be at 3.2% of the GDP or RM37bil,” it said.

The Ministry added that the 2015 Budget, which was tabled in Parliament last October, was drafted based on the price of crude oil at US$105 (RM378) a barrel, noting that the price had since fallen to US$55 (RM198) per barrel.

On Tuesday, Najib announced adjustments to the 2015 Budget with both proactive and pre-emptive measures, in a bid to ensure sustainable development and the resilience of the economy, with actions and policy interventions being set up to handle the changing economic scenario caused by the oil price slump.

When Najib, who is also Finance Minister, tabled Budget 2015 last year with an expected expenditure of RM273.9bil against an expected revenue of RM235.2bil, oil price averaged around US$90 (RM324) per barrel.

However, the price has been falling and is expected to drop to as low as US$40 (RM140) in the first six months of this year.