The Angolan parliament today approved in its entirety the General State Budget (OGE) 2023 with favourable votes from the ruling MPLA, PRS, FNLA and PHA (opposition), while UNITA, the largest opposition party, voted against the document.
The 2023 state budget was approved by the plenary with 124 votes in favour, notably from the ruling People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), the Social Renewal Party (PRS), the National Front for the Liberation of Angola (FNLA) and the Humanist Party of Angola (PHA), 86 votes against from the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) and no abstentions.
The government proposal, which estimates revenues and sets expenditure of 20.1 trillion kwanzas (38.3 billion euros), passed the parliamentary sieve in its entirety during the fourth extraordinary plenary meeting of the first legislative session of the 5th Legislature of the National Assembly of Angola.
For the MPLA, the vote in favour of the first budget after the general elections in August 2022 came about due to the fact that the government, which it supported, presented “solutions” to “provide responses to the political significance of the loss of the qualified majority.
“That is why this State Budget increases the allocation for health, for education, and reinforces the allocation for the fight against poverty. That is why this State Budget will increase the value of the Kwenda Programme (cash transfer programme for the most vulnerable populations), not only by increasing the value of the benefit, but also by enlarging the number of beneficiaries,” said Virgílio de Fontes Pereira, president of the ruling party’s parliamentary group.
The MPLA and its President, João Lourenço, “are aware that Angolans face enormous challenges in terms of employment, secondary and tertiary roads, fighting malnutrition and drought in certain locations,” he admitted.
“We are aware of what the people’s concerns are and we assume our political responsibility in parliament and in the executive to solve the people’s problems,” the parliamentary leader said in his explanation of vote.
UNITA, which once again rejected an OGE, based its vote against, in its explanation of vote presented by member Albertina Ngolo, considering that some of the macroeconomic assumptions, fiscal, monetary and foreign exchange policies of the Budget “will not be friendly to businesspeople and families.
“Unfortunately, Angolan families will continue to face a high cost of living, thousands of citizens will continue to live on the breadline, the unemployment rate currently standing at 30 percent of the active population runs serious risks of worsening,” she said.
Companies “will continue to face serious difficulties in leveraging their business, they will pay more tax within the production chain, without forgetting the constraints by delaying payment of debt by the State to these economic agents,” he noted.
The mixed parliamentary group made up of the PRS and FNLA parties approved the proposal for the 2023 state budget considering that their contributions, during discussions of the document in detail, were partially accepted in the joint opinion report.
In the opinion of PRS MP Benedito Daniel, who presented the explanation of vote, he said that their contributions to the Budget however interesting they may be “cannot substantially change the line of its conception or the spirit of its drafting”.
For her part, the MP and President of the PHA, Florbela Malaquias, who voted in favour of the GSB 2023, said that the document is, above all, “an instrument for building and strengthening democracy, a humanising device”.
“We voted in favour so that we can correspond with the urgency of our time and start working on the execution of the State Budget, and others to control its execution in detail, because that is what is up to us,” argued the leader of the “humanists”.
The 2023 state budget, approved in its entirety today, estimates revenues and sets expenditure of 20.1 trillion kwanzas (38.3 billion euros), of which 13.4 trillion kwanzas (25.5 billion euros) is tax revenue and 6.6 trillion kwanzas (12.5 billion euros) is financial revenue.
Angola’s largest macroeconomic management instrument was drawn up at the weighted average price of a barrel of oil of US$75 (EUR68).
The country’s biggest macroeconomic management instrument, according to the Minister of State for Economic Coordination, Manuel Nunes Júnior, will fundamentally meet two objectives, namely, “continued economic growth of the country and continued prudent budget management.