Finance Minister Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal presented the budget for next year (1392) to the Senate House on Tuesday, revealing that a little less than half of it would be funded by foreign donors.

Speaking before the Senate, Zakhilwal said that next year’s budget will be 366 billion Afghanis (US$7bn) with 169bn Afghanis ($3.7bn) for normal budget and 170bn Afs ($3.2bn) for development budget.

According to the government estimations, 54 percent of the budget will be secured from national resources while 46 percent will be provided from foreign sources.

Compared to previous years, more funding was allocated towards security, agriculture, education, health, infrastructures and the vulnerable provinces, he said

“We want to make our country self reliable in terms of economy,” he added.

Zakhilwal also rejected reports that Afghanistan’s economy will deteriorate after 2014, but acknowledged the need for international aid.

“There will no economic crisis in Afghanistan after withdrawal of foreign forces,” he said, adding it would be impossible to complete the necessary budget without foreign donations.

He claimed that in spite of the challenges faced by Afghan traders, the past few years had seen incomes and the economy strengthen.

Zakhilwal said that good governance, combating corruption, building the capacity of government staff and increasing incomes are the priorities of the Finance Ministry.

The budget will require the National Assembly’s approval before the next fiscal year begins on the first day of Jadi (December 21 2012).

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