JUBA, (Xinhua) --
The South Sudan parliament late Monday approved a
299.9 million U.S. dollar budget for the 2017/18 fiscal year
following a month-long debate.
The budget is 54
million dollars higher than the FY 2016-17.
Stephen Dhieu Dau told Parliament that 191 million U.S. dollar
is available to fund the budget, leaving a deficit of 108
The key priority
areas for the government will be spending on salaries and
transfers which constituted 62 percent of the budget, increased
funding for peace initiatives and the agriculture sector.
War-torn South Sudan
depends on oil export for 98 percent of its revenue, but
production reduced significantly due to the civil war that
erupted in December 2013, causing most oilfields in the
country’s oil-rich northern region to shut down.
The East African
nation is currently struggling with hyper inflation amid
shortage of foreign reserves to support its import-dependent
The finance minister
said the net oil revenue available to fund the 2017-18 is
estimated at 166 million dollars, which is just 20 percent of
the country’s gross revenue.
Dau said the deficit
would be covered by implementing the 2017-2018 Tax Amendment
Bill which proposes new measures to boost non-oil revenue
collection, tougher financial regulations and increased
borrowing from Treasury Bills.
The new targets
include increasing airport departure tax from 20 dollars to 30
dollars, raising sole proprietor income tax by 5 percent and
establishing a revenue authority to reform tax collection and
public financial management.