Bahrain's finance and national economy ministry unveiled Tuesday its budget for the 2001-200 period, estimated at BD1.66b (approximately $3.4b), reported the Gulf Daily.
The budget, benefiting from buoyant oil prices, seeks to create new jobs, boost privatization and private sector involvement, and encourage investment, said the daily.
A budgetary deficit of BD314 million ($ 600 million) is envisaged over the two years, while inflation is expected to be very low, at two percent, said the Daily.
"The budget is a statement that reflects the aspirations of the leadership for promoting growth, trade and jobs and enhancing infrastructure, such as power, water, schools, "finance minister, Abdullah Saif told a press conference.
It also gives importance to investment in the new economy by creating e-government and promoting investment in high technology, he added.
The budget, said the minister, envisages total revenues worth BD669m for 2001 and BD675m for 2002.
Of this, oil revenues are projected at BD365m for each year, representing 55 percent of total revenues in 2001 and 54 percent in 2002.
"We try to focus our (oil) revenues on an average price, to avoid the bust and boom phenomenon," continued the minister.
According to a figures released by the finance ministry on its website, the government projected a BD320 million deficit ($848 million) for 1999/2000, compared with BD150 million projected for 1997/1998.
Projected expenditures in the 1999/2000 budget totaled BD1.458 billion, up from BD1.395 billion in the 1997/1998 budget-- Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )