(MENAFN- Jordan News Agency) Amman, Nov. 30 (Petra) -- The government passed the 2021 draft state budget law and the draft law governing the budgets of independent public institutions to the parliament for debate and approval, State Minister for Media Affairs Ali al-Ayed said Monday.
The government has worked in accordance with the royal directives in the Letter of Designation to prepare a "realistic and applicable budget that accurately reflects the projected revenues and expenditures," Al-Ayed told a joint press conference with Minister of Finance Muhammad Ississ.
He explained that the budget takes into account the exceptional circumstances the Kingdom has experienced and focuses on national priorities, noting that allowances and pay hikes of public servants, which were put on hold earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, will be resumed as of the beginning of 2021.
Al-Ayed, who is also the government's official spokesperson, stressed that the main objective of next year's budget is to put public finance "on the right path" to serve the national economy, pointing out that the draft will be published on the website of the General Budget Department later in the day.
The minister also said that the combined accounts of the Himmat Wattan Fund, the Ministry of Social Development-managed "Al-Khair" account and the Ministry of Health's donations stood at JD94.2 million.
He explained that the total amount withdrawn from the fund has reached JD92.2 million, including JD73 million channeled to the National Aid Fund to support day workers and JD4.2 million extended to the Ministry of Health to procure PCR equipment.
According to the minister, other areas of expenditure including the following: JD2 million for Tkiyet Um Ali charity; JD1 million for the Jordan Hashemite Charity Organization; JD2 million for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates for the repatriation costs of Jordanians stranded abroad in the early months of the pandemic; JD433,000 for university hospitals to procure ventilators and dialysis machines; and JD10 million to supply equipment for makeshift hospitals set up by the Ministry of Health.
Al-Ayed indicated that the amount remaining in the Himmat Wattan Fund was JD1.6 million, while the standing balance of the Al-Khair account is JD3.9 million. The current available balance in the donations account of the ministry of health is JD11.9 million, he added.
The minister stressed that the mechanism used to manage spending from the Himmat Wattan Fund and all COVID-related accounts are subject to robust control and scrutiny, explaining that the aspects of spending are clear and only designed address and minimize the ramifications of the pandemic.
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