Last Update 13:36
Monday, 25 January 2021

Egypt's finance ministry aims to reform $4 bn in special funds

Ministry says it is working towards placing over 6,000 special funds worth billions under public scrutiny, like other state funds

Marwa Hussein, Thursday 28 Aug 2014
 Kadry Demian
Finance Minister Hany Kadry Demian (Photo: Al-Ahram)
Views: 1439
Views: 1439

Egypt's finance ministry says it hopes to amend the country's budget law to place special funds – long a source of controversy – under the same rules that govern public money.

Special funds are raised by state institutions through other means than customs or taxes – hospital fees or parking tickets, for example – and are attached to a wide variety of public bodies.

They are not included in the state budget or subjected to parliamentary supervision.

There are more than 6,300 special funds in Egypt, worth a total of LE27.275 billion ($3.8 billion), the finance ministry said in a press release on Thursday.

The ministry says that the new legal modifications will place all withdrawals from the funds, as well as their bids and tenders, under the same rules as other public funds.

Originally created by president Anwar Sadat as a way to give municipalities more autonomy and free up the central budget, the funds later become synonymous with corruption during the era of Hosni Mubarak.

Past governments have tried to reform the funds. In February 2012, former finance minster Momtaz El-Saeed called for the funds to be integrated into the state budget.

Islamist president Mohamed Morsi made a similar move during his one-year mandate, ordering for 20 special funds – and 10 percent of their annual revenue – to be absorbed into the budget.

The efforts resulted in the transfer of LE10.6 billion ($1.5 billion) over the last two years.

Some special funds were left untouched – like those for hospitals or citizen donations for universities, as well as funds that receive donations from foreign countries and other donors.



Short link:



© 2010 Ahram Online.