The Ministry of Finance has published the annual fiscal outturns for 2012/2013. According to a statement published by the Ministry last night, the publication is consistent with Section 36.4 of the Public Financial Management (PFM) Act of 2009. The Ministry also submitted the report to the President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and National Legislature.
The fiscal outturns present an overview of the government’s balance sheet and a review of budget execution (revenue and expenditure) during the fiscal year. The Ministry encourages the general public to review and scrutinize the publication with the desire to make observations that will inform the next budget formulation as well as implementation.
The FY12/13 was the first national budget planned and executed using the new Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF). The outturns demonstrate that the execution of the National Budget has continued to improve as PFM reforms take hold.
With the outlook as presented in the outturns, the Ministry of Finance says it is optimistic that efficiency is expected to continue to improve through reductions in waste, fraud and the prudent execution of the budget.
According to the outturns, total revenue collected in FY 2012/13 was US$ 554.2 million, an increase of 16.8% over FY 2011/12 of US$461 million.
Core tax revenue rose to US$380.1 million, core non-tax revenue to US$65.2 million and budget support grants from Liberia’s development partners’ totalled US$45.7 million. Contingent tax and non-tax revenue realized during the fiscal year was US$63 million.
The Ministry also said it is pleased to report that FY 2012/13 also saw the introduction of Liberian Dollar denominated Treasury Bills that resulted in the issuance of LD$377 million (approximately US$5 million) for the first time in Liberia’s history.
According to the Ministry, the issuance of Treasury Bills (T-bills) has improved government’s ability to execute the budget through liquidity management by smoothing revenue during the year and help deepen Liberia’s financial markets.
Liberia’s annual budget has also witnessed seen an increase from US$81 million in FY2005/06 to an approved Budget of US$672 million in FY 2012/13, and expenditure on a commitment basis for FY 2012/13 of US$593m, reflecting considerable improvement in the country’s economic outlook and the Government’s sound fiscal management.
The Government says it spent US$136 million on Public Sector Investment Plan (PSIP) projects in FY 2012/13.
“This,” according to the Ministry “included expenditure of US$48.5 million on roads and bridges, which rose by 85% from FY 2011/12, and US$15 million on energy projects, including funding for the rehabilitation of Mt Coffee Hydroelectric Dam and the construction of an 18 megawatts Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) plant that are expected to significantly reduce the cost of electricity.”
Liberia’s development partners have continued to provide crucial assistance through grants and loans in the form of both budget support and project aid. As at end June 2013, actual aid disbursement by partners amounted to US$423,540,577.
In another development, the Authorities have completed and published an un-audited Consolidated Financial Statement for FY2012/13 and submitted same to the President and National Legislature, and to the General Auditing Commission (GAC). The GAC is expected to conduct a full audit on the report and express an opinion.
The financial statements of the Government of Liberia provide a record of the Government’s financial performance for the financial year ended 30 June 2013 and the financial position of the Consolidated Fund as at 30 June 2013. The “Consolidated Fund” means the Consolidated Fund of Liberia as established under Section 4 of the Public Financial Management (PFM) Act of 2009.
The financial statements provide a comparative analysis of the actual outturns of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2012/13 and the previous financial year ended 30 June 2012. The following is an overview of Government’s financial performance for the financial year ended 30 June 2013, as reported in the financial statements.
The Authorities say that in preparing the Annual Consolidated Financial Statements, the most appropriate accounting policies were consistently applied and supported by reasonable and prudent judgment and estimates.
The Authorities also state that Government’s sound budget execution and focus on capital investment in critical economic infrastructure will help drive economic growth and poverty reduction.
The Liberian economy continues to experience robust economic performance despite slow recovery in the global economy; real economic growth was sustained in 2012, led by the first full year of iron ore exports, construction, and strong performance in the service sector, but these positive trends are subject to fluctuations in commodity prices, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), and overseas development assistance.
Growth in real gross domestic product (GDP) averaged about 7.4 percent over the past three years and is expected to grow by around 8.1 percent in 2013.