All eyes will be on Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana when he delivers the 2021 Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) on Thursday.
MTBPS 2021: What to expect
High on the list of priorities for concerned South Africans who’ll be turned into the occasion is the government’s economic plan heading into the 2022 financial year.
COVID-19 is still a factor in the country’s efforts to regain momentum in the fiscus but experts believe there is room for positivity ahead of Godongwana’s address.
In an opinion piece for Mail & Guardian, Miguel da Silva, Managing Director at Retail Capital SA, indicated that this year’s MTBPS was an opportunity for the finance ministry to “include new stimulus packages for small and medium enterprises.”
“The first prize would be for the minister to deliver a stimulus-led or growth statement. Previous stimulus plans triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic failed most SMEs because they were geared more towards larger medium enterprises, so there’s an opportunity to try again and bring in alternative lenders who don’t bring the same burdensome conditions as banks,” he said.
Some analysts have been cautious about expecting the minister to deliver refreshed policy frameworks, and believe the speech will be an extension of the groundworks laid by predecessor Tito Mboweni.
Meaning that, more than likely, not much fuss will be made about the government’s fiscal revenue adjustments or its lending capacity.
However, murmurs sounding off from those with their ears to the ground suggest that there could be interesting policy changes made to social grants, taxes, and cooperative relations with the private sector.
Why is the medium term budget policy statement important?
The MTBPS is as important of an event as the president’s annual state of the nation address. This is where the finance ministry sets forth its policy framework for the upcoming budget speech.
The policy statement allows government to inform South Africans on its policy goals for the next financial year, it lays the groundwork for the policy guidelines that will oversee expenditure for the next three financial years, and outlays the spending review of every department.
MTBPS 2021: How to watch live in South Africa
Minister Godongwana will deliver the MTBPS 2021 on Thursday from 14:00. You can tune into the address right here. Alternatively, every news and government channel will broadcast the occasion live.
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