GOVERNMENT has surpassed its revenue collection target for the first quarter of 2020 by more than 10 percent netting over $14 billion against a set target of $12,81 billion.
This was revealed by Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa during a post-Cabinet meeting briefing in Harare on Thursday night.
“The Minister of Finance and Economic Development (Professor Mthuli Ncube) reported that revenue collections for the first quarter of 2020 amounted to $14,18 billion, exceeding the targeted revenue of $12,81 billion by 10,67 percent,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
“That $4,75 billion was spent on employment costs as at 31 March, 2020, against the target of $3,96 billion and that social spending amounted to $1, 25 billion against a target of $1,6 billion.”
Minister Mutsvangwa said Prof Ncube told Cabinet that capital expenditure reached $6,78 billion, against the targeted $5,4 billion and that the development of the Policy and Procedure Manual for the implementation of the International Public Sectors Accounting Standards stood at 60 percent complete, with Ernst and Young having been hired as project consultant.
As part of the 100-day project cycle, the review of the Standardised Asset Register for Government Ministries, departments and agencies was 70 percent complete while hardware and software for five of the targeted 50 Public Finance Management System kiosks had been delivered, leaving the project at 65 percent complete.
Responding to questions on how Government utilised the $1,25 billion on social spending, Prof Ncube said the money was used to finance the Basic Education Assistance Module (BEAM), health support for the vulnerable and the water and sanitation programme.
Prof Ncube said part of the money was transferred as cash payments to vulnerable members of the society.
Minister Mutsvangwa said Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement counterpart Air Chief Marshal (Retired) Perrance Shiri updated Cabinet on the 2020 tobacco marketing season.
Tobacco sales had started on a positive note with cumulative sales for the first 16 days of the current season surpassing by 540 percent, those for the comparative period in 2018 – 2019 season.
To date, a total of 12 605 647 kilogrammes of tobacco had been sold through the auction and contract systems, compared to a total of 2 024 182 kilogrammes sold during the same period last season.
Minister Mutsvangwa said the value of the tobacco sold during the current 2019-2020 marketing season amounted to US$28 830 502 at an average price US$2,09 per kilogramme.
This was much higher than the US$3 562 220 realised during the comparative period in 2018-2019 whose average price was US$1,79.
She said Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Minister Kirsty Coventry updated Cabinet on various projects being undertaken by her Ministry.
Among other projects, Minister Coventry reported progress on the operationalisation of the Sizinda Vocational Training Centre’s new site in Bulawayo and the construction of the factory house for fruit and vegetables processing in Mutoko.