4 minute read
24 Feb 2016
1:59 pm

Budget speech 2016 as it happened

We bring you a live report from the 2016 Budget Speech.

Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan delivers his budget speech. (Photo by Gallo Images / Foto24 / Leanne Stander)

15:23 Gordhan concluded by using former president Nelson Mandela’s quote which says: “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give up to despair. That way lay defeat and death.” “Let’s be resilient,” concludes Gordhan.  

15:20 In conclusion, Gordhan thanks some members of the South African Reserve Bank, Nedlac, and other financial experts. “Politics can be rough,” says Gordhan while thanking his family.

15:19 Gordhan concludes his speech. Some MPs are booing him, while the majority are clapping hands.

15:19 We have a strong macro and fiscal economic framework.

15:18 The needs of the young are not the same as those of the elderly.

15:15 Gordhan talks about transport now.

15:08 Spending in Defense Ministry will rise.

15:07 2.5bn allocated to help clear students’ NSFAS debts.

15:04 R15bn for bulk water infrastructure.

15:00 “We need to accelerate infrastructure investment.”

14:56 Former finance minister Trevor Manuel claps his hands in excitement.

14:54 Tax rebate for beneficiaries of the pension funds.

14:50 Gordhan talks about the national health insurance.

14:48 There’s an increase in capital gains tax.

Social grants have taken up 94.2% of the Social Department’s total budget allocation. The department has projected paying  grants to about 18.1 million beneficiaries by the end of 2018/19.

The budget for social protection this year amounts to R167.5 billion.

This is split in old-age grants, receiving R58.9bn, the child support grant gaining R52.0bn, the disability grant with R20.4bn, the provincial social grant receiving R17.7bn, policy oversight and grant administration in receipt of R9.3bn and other grants at R9.2bn.

In his budget speech yesterday, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan announced that the old age, disability and care dependency grants will rise by R80 to R1 500 in April 2016, and by a further R10 to R1 510 in October.

The child support grant will rise by R20 to R350 in April and the foster care grant by R30 to R890. by Yadhana Jadoo

Read full article here

14:47 There’s introduction of tax on sweet beverages, paper bags, alcohol products among other products.

14:46 “We have paid special attention to the exclusivity of the tax system.”

14:43 Gordhan is now talking about tax. He coughs.

14:38 The minister talks about the elimination on unnecessary positions in government departments.

14:36 “We cannot spend money we don’t have,” Gordhan on fiscal consolidation.

14:35 R19bn allocated for land acquisition.

14:33 R62bn allocated for housing.

Tabling his budget amid ongoing protests at some of the country’s universities, Gordhan said government is crafting solutions to the voices of students regarding fees and housing.

“I need to emphasise that violent protest is not an acceptable way of articulating these challenges.

“Also, in these and other areas, the choices we make cannot meet every need, and the action we require involves collective action by many stakeholders,” he said. by Steven Tau

Read more here

14:30 Public investment is doing much of the work.

14:29 Gordhan talks about initiatives aimed at combating tender corruption.

14:28 R9bn for sea economy.

14:26 The minister says government is coming up with solutions regarding students fees. He, however, condemns violent protests.

14:24 Our economy is not growing fast enough.

14:21 There’s been growth in some exports products such as citrus fruits.

14:20 Macro economic policy is effective.

14:19 Treasury estimates of growth is about 0.9 percent

14:18 Our major exports have seen a decline.

14:17 Gordhan comment Operation Hydrate and Gift of the Givers for their efforts during the drought period.

14:17 “Investment in the cities has been accelerated.”

14:16 NSFAS budget increased.

14:15 R93 bn is allocated to education.

To fund shortfall challenges in higher education, R16.3 billion had been set aside of which R5.7 billion would go towards university fees.

Almost R300 billion has been allocated to basic and higher education for the 2016/17 financial year.

According to the budget vote released by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, basic education would receive the lion’s share of R205 billion.

The remainder would be split between university subsidies (R28bn), the national student financial aid scheme (R14bn); the skills development levy to institutions (R15.9bn); education administration (R14.6bn) and technical and vocational education and training (R6.9bn).

To fund shortfall challenges in higher education, R16.3 billion had been set aside of which R5.7 billion would go towards the shortfall in university fees. by Denise Williams

Read more here

14:14 The budget deficit will be reduced to 3.2% is 2016.

14:13 “The budget is guided by the NDP.”

14:11 Gordhan says the National Development Plan (NDP) is a programme for inclusive development.

14:10 Gordhan condemns corruption and wasteful expenditure.

14:09 “This budget is about prioritisation”.

14:08 “Working together we can combat corruption”

14:07 “We need to collectively invest in infrastructure”

14:05 “We want our government to work effectively,” Gordhan.

14:00 Speaker Baleka Mbete calls on finance minister Pravin Gordhan to start with the speech.

13:58 Members of Parliament (MPs) and political party leaders arrive in parliament for the 2016 Budget Speech.