Treasury CS Ukur Yattani has hit the ground running a day after his appointment by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
A report published by the Business Daily on Thursday, January 16, indicated that Yattani rolled out Treasury’s plans to reduce spending by Ksh100 billion in the financial year starting July 2020.
Yattani’s moves spell tougher austerity measures to ministries, departments and state agencies that have already been hit by tough restrictions on expenditures considered non-essential to their operations.
“We are sustaining austerity measures that we have put in place this financial year. If we had a choice, maybe we would have relooked at it but we do not have much because we need money to invest in capital good, in areas that will grow the economy so that is why we lean on the recurrent,” he was quoted.
Yattani’s sentiments were made when he was addressing a meeting on the preparation of the 2020/2021 budget.
“I am optimistic that in the coming year, we will register a fall in the budget deficit by about Ksh100 billion. It requires time to move it from the Ksh600 billion by the end of next year,” he was quoted.
Yattani is also reported to have insisted that there would be no room for budget deficits in the near future which have been occasioned by the government’s borrowing spree and the constant failure by KRA to meet its targets.
The former Marsabit governor also insisted that the current measures curtailing state advertisement and travel would still be in place.
“We must have discipline. You will not have ulcers because you have not traveled. We will continue to pursue fiscal consolidation and will only give what we can afford. What KRA collects is what we can afford.
“What KRA collects is what we intend to use as we have exhausted every other means,” he was quoted.
Yattani, who had been in an acting capacity at the helm of the National Treasury while serving as the CS for Labour and Social Services, was fully confirmed as the Treasury CS in a cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday, January 14. He was replaced by Simon Chelugui at the Labour ministry.