Kenya to ditch wide fiscal deficits, finance minister says


NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenya will no longer set wide budget deficits and will focus on raising funds through revenue collection and minimal borrowing, the finance minister said on Wednesday

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s government has been criticised for saddling the country with a heavy debt load in recent years. The government was forced to raise its borrowing ceiling last year after it breached the set level.

Ukur Yatani, who was confirmed as the finance minister on Tuesday after acting in the role since last July, said the room for budget deficits, which have been above 6% of GDP in recent years, had long closed.

“We are going to cut our cloth according to our size,” he told a meeting to prepare the government’s 2020/21 budget.

He warned that sources of plugging the deficits “are either exhausted” or “on edge”. “The government will continue to pursue the fiscal consolidation policy.”

Reporting by Duncan Miriri; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Andrew Cawthorne

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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