Minister of Finance Basil Rajapaksa commenced delivering the 2022 Budget proposals, the second under President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
President Rajapaksa is also in Parliament to witness today’s proceedings.
Parliament proceedings commenced at 2pm under the patronage of Speaker of House Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena.
Commencing the Budget speech, Minister Rajapaksa said the 2022 Budget was prepared at a time that the country is facing a major health crisis.
Minister Rajapaksa noted the COVID-19 crisis has impacted the country in all spheres especially on the economic front.
The Finance Minister said they are faced with five main issues at present.
He said state revenue has reduced considerably while the Treasury has not received around Rs.500 billion in revenue this year alone.
Minister Rajapaksa said the present administration is facing challenges that no other government has faced in history.
He said despite the massive challenges, they believe they have the ability and strength to overcome challenges and rebuild the country.
The Minister said not only economic issues, the government has showcased that it is capable of successfully overcoming the health crisis as well.
He said the country’s vaccination drive has been commended by foreign powers and they have managed to mitigate the COVID-19 crisis much better than regional countries.
Minister Basil Rajapaksa said Sri Lanka is now referred to as a ‘vaccinated nation’, due to the high inoculation rate.
He said the government has also been able to take steps to commence post-COVID-19 economic recovery.
Minister of Finance Basil Rajapaksa said with the support of the President, they are hoping to make huge strides as a nation next year by implementing the 2022 budget proposals.
This is the second Budget of the current government and the 76th in the country.
The Cabinet of Ministers that convened today under the patronage of the President, granted approval to the 2022 Budget this afternoon.
Total state expenditure during the period from the 1st of January 2022 to the 31st of December 2022 has been estimated at Rs.2,505.3 billion.