Legislative-executive branches joint meeting held


Manama, Mar. 13 (BNA): The Financial and Economic Affairs Committees at the Shura and Representatives Councils held today its first joint meeting with the government’s representatives to discuss a draft law to endorse the state’s general budget for the fiscal years 2019-2020. The meeting convened under the presidency of Representatives Council Speaker Fawzia bint Abdullah Zainal, in the presence of Shura Council Chairman Ali bin Saleh Al Saleh and Deputy Prime Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, the Head of the Ministerial Committee for Financial and Economic Affairs and Fiscal Balance.


The meeting was also attended by the Minister of Finance and National Economy, the Minister of the Shura and Representatives Councils Affairs, the Head of the Shura Council’s Financial and Economic Affairs Committee and members of the Financial and Economic Affairs Committees at the Shura and Representatives Councils.


The Representatives Council Speaker stressed that the royal directives of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, included mainly in his address in the opening of the first session of the fifth legislative term, will always serve as a roadmap in serving the nation and citizens. She praised cooperation with the government led by HRH Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa and HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Premier. She noted that positive cooperation between the legislative and executive branches, the spirit of consensus and complementarity, taking into consideration the supreme interest of the nation, catering to citizens’ needs, preserving achievements, ensuring continuity of the direct subsidisation programme for eligible citizens while taking into account current challenges will contribute to achieving set up goals from the state’s general budget draft law, the Government’s Action Plan and plans to boost the economic situation. 


The Shura Council Chairman stressed the need for continuous cooperation between the legislative and executive branches to carry out the state’s general budget project for 2019-2020, reach a consensual result that meets the aspirations of HM the King’s leadership and citizens and back the efforts to achieve financial balance. He pointed out that the exceptional circumstances surrounding endorsement of the budget necessitate hard work to ensure its rapid implementation. He added surmounting the circumstances is a joint responsibility and all have to work as one team. He expressed hope the efforts made by all parties will lead to a budget that takes into consideration first and foremost the supreme national interest.


Deputy Prime Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa conveyed the greetings of HRH the Premier and HRH the Crown Prince, stressing that discussing the state’ s general budget project for the fiscal years 2019-2020 will bring to Bahrain more growth and prosperity under the leadership of HM the King. He underlined the government’s keenness on ensuring cooperation and consensus are the characteristic features of the meetings during which the budget will be discussed. He pointed out that the budget project reflects keenness to preserve achievements, ensure the public sector’s labour force expenditure is not affected, continue providing basic services like education, health, social services and housing and continue supporting eligible citizens in all the government’s subsidisation programmes.


Minister of Finance and National Economy Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa gave a presentation on the fiscal rules and bases on which the state’s general budget estimations for the two fiscal years 2019-2020 were built. He pointed out that those estimations were based mainly on the Government’s Action Plan and the Fiscal Balance Programme. He added that the government has given citizens’ interests and sustainability of services utmost consideration throughout preparation of the budget.


A joint meeting between the financial committees of the Shura and Representatives Councils and representatives of the government is set to be held later this week.


A O Q


BNA 1620 GMT 2019/03/13


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