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Mboweni expected to paint bleak picture in 'emergency' budget

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni will unveil his special adjustment budget during a joint sitting of Parliament at 3pm this afternoon.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni. Picture: @TreasurySA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Finance Minister Tito Mboweni is expected to paint a bleak picture of the state of the South African economy when he tables his “emergency” budget on Wednesday.

Mboweni will unveil his special adjustment budget during a joint sitting of Parliament at 3pm this afternoon.

It’s necessary because the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown have unraveled the budget that Mboweni unveiled just four months ago in February.

Thanks to COVID-19, Treasury has had to revise its figures, projections and allocations to national and provincial departments and local government…

In a briefing to Nedlac last week, Minister Mboweni warned that substantial fiscal measures were needed to avoid a debt crisis and to ensure stability.

At the same time, state-owned enterprises such as South African Airways and the Land Bank are looking for bailouts.

With businesses forced to close during lockdown, revenue is expected to have declined sharply, which means that the government may have to borrow much more than Mboweni forecast would be necessary in his February budget.

The supplementary budget will largely deal with the R500 billion relief package announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa to address the COVID-19 crisis.

Mboweni is known for his straight-talking. He is expected to pull no punches when he delivers his emergency budget speech this afternoon.

WATCH: What to expect from Finance Minister Mboweni’s special Budget Speech

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