Parliament to meet in Tobruk next Monday to debate amended 2021 budget and Sovereign Positions

By Sami Zaptia.

(Logo: Tobruk HoR).

London, 20 May 2021:

Libya’s parliament (the House of Representatives-HoR) announced yesterday that it is to hold an official session next Monday (24 May) in Tobruk.

It said the session will discuss the draft 2021 budget and Sovereign Positions.

Original budget rejected with numerous amendments

It will be recalled that the initial LD 96 billion 2021 budget proposed by prime minister Abd Alhamid Aldabaiba’s Government of National Unity (GNU) to parliament on 17 March had been rejected. The government then returned an amended version to parliament on 2 May.

The five sections of the budget were:

  1. State-sector salaries – LD 33 bn
  2. Operational spending – LD 12 bn
  3. Projects and Development – LD 22 bn
  4. Subsidies – 24 bn
  5. Emergency budget – 5 bn

 

The projected sources for this budget were:

  • Oil and gas revenues – 89 bn
  • Non-oil revenues – 3.9 bn

 

Main reasons for rejection

The main reasons for its rejection were:

  • The budget was too big for the governments short term in office of 9 months.
  • The government has no time for medium/long term projects.
  • The state has no strong monitoring institutions.
  • Susceptible to corruption.
  • Government should be realistic and concentrated efforts effectively by acting as a short-term, crisis management government concentrating on preparing for elections, fighting the pandemic, solving the electricity crisis and maybe the cash crises.
  • The budget was amended to consider more ministries under the current government.
  • Critics of parliament say it was delayed as leverage to influence the prime minister’s choice of Deputy Ministers.

 

Political leverage

However, whilst these were the main announced reasons for the rejection of the 2021 budget, analysts suspect that parliament also rejected the budget for political reasons. They say it was using the budget as leverage to obtain concessions from government, including on the ongoing appointment of Deputy Ministers.

 

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97 HoR members discuss 2021 budget – debate to continue today | (libyaherald.com)

2021 budget to be discussed at Monday’s HoR session, delays due to errors in content and switch from fewer Serraj ministries to increased Aldabaiba ministries | (libyaherald.com)

HoR to hold session in Tobruk on Monday 19 April to discuss draft 2021 budget law | (libyaherald.com)

GNU presents draft 2021 budget to High State Council and parliament | (libyaherald.com)

Budget reunification meeting agrees to form committee to approve 2021 budget | (libyaherald.com)

Western and Eastern Libyan delegation meet to discuss unification of budget – part of 2020 Maetig-Hafter resumption of oil production-export agreement | (libyaherald.com)

Salaries increased by 20 percent, Competitions Commission created, and 2021 budget discussed at Cabinet meeting | (libyaherald.com)

Tripoli government holds meeting on 2021 budget and proposed reforms | (libyaherald.com)

Libya’s draft 2021 budget discussions completed | (libyaherald.com)

Ministry of Finance launches e-platform for 2021 budget preparation | (libyaherald.com)

 

 

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