Sri Lanka budget 2010 likely delayed

Oct 02, 2009 (LBO) – A decision on delaying Sri Lanka 2010 budget and seeking parliamentary approval for spending in the interim, would be made latest by next week, deputy finance minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said. But a senior official said a vote-on-account, or a mini budget for a shorter duration than a year could also presented as long it was consistent with program targets.

The ‘appropriation bill’, which is the first state of the budgeting process, which sets out state expenses by department for next year was originally expected to be presented to parliament by October 08.

It is usually followed up in November with formal revenue proposals, where a ‘budget speech’ is in made in parliament by the finance minister.

“Requests to delay the budget have intensified,” Siyambalapitiya said. “The decision is likely to be known by next week.”

The current administration was considering delaying the budget until national polls expected in the first quarter of 2010 was over.

The 2010 budget is a December quarter structural benchmark of an economic program agreed with the International Monetary Fund.