Interest expenditure to be increased in budget
Arun Sarker: It is estimated that more than Tk 22 thousand crore will be spent in the interest expenditure sector in the budget of the next financial year 2023-2024 compared to the current financial year 2022-2023. That is, in the budget of the next financial year 2023-2024, the expenditure in this sector has been estimated at Tk 1 lakh 2 thousand 376 crore. In the current fiscal year 2022-2023, the interest expense is estimated at Tk 80 thousand 375 crore. As a percentage that is 27.37 percent.
This information is known from the Finance Department of the Ministry of Finance.
In this regard, an official of the finance department said that the main reason behind the increase in interest expenses in the last three financial years is the increase in the sale of savings certificates. Due to the government taking more loans from this sector, the interest cost also increases a lot. Because the interest rate on savings bonds is very high.
He said, this time an attempt was made to keep the interest expenditure within the budget target. This is because the sale of savings bonds has come down considerably in the current financial year due to the reduction in interest rates. However, due to the increase in social security expenditure, the government needs to borrow more. And interest costs are likely to rise eventually.
According to sources, not only the interest cost of savings bonds, but also the cost of foreign loan interest cost will increase in the new budget. Because the government has taken loans from different countries and organizations for different mega projects. Interest payments on these loans will increase in the next financial year. As a result, there is a need to keep increased money in the interest sector kept in the budget.
By reviewing the budget documents, it is seen that the interest expenditure in the budget is increasing every year. For example, in the revised budget of the fiscal year 2020-2021, the expenditure on the interest sector is estimated at Tk 63 thousand 823 crores. In the original budget which was 63 thousand 801 crores. Out of the interest expenditure, the domestic interest expenditure has been estimated at Tk 58 thousand 500 crore. And the interest expense of foreign debt is estimated at Tk 5 thousand 323 crore. In the financial year 2019-2020, Tk 57 thousand 664 crore have been spent on the interest sector.
Out of this, interest expenditure on domestic sector was Tk 52 thousand 796 crore and interest expenditure on foreign loans was Tk 4 thousand 868 crore. Earlier, in the financial year 2018-2019, interest expenditure in the domestic sector was Tk 45 thousand 278 crore and foreign interest expenditure was Tk 3 thousand 467 crore. In the financial year 2017-2018, the domestic interest expenditure was Tk 38 thousand 160 crore and the foreign debt interest expenditure was Tk 3 thousand 605 crore.
Similarly, in the financial year 2016-2017, this expenditure is Tk 38 thousand 240 crore and Tk 1 thousand 711 crore respectively. In 2015-2016 financial year Tk 30 thousand 44 crore and Tk 1 thousand 625 crores and in 2014-2015 financial year domestic interest expenditure was Tk 29 thousand 436 crores and foreign debt interest expenditure was Tk 1 thousand 537 crores.
To meet the increased expenditure on various development projects and other sectors, the rate of borrowing from the domestic and foreign sectors has increased, resulting in an increase in the cost of interest on those loans. Sources said that every year the allocation for this sector has to be increased to meet the interest on the loan.
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