Botswana’s Finance and Economic Development Ministry anticipates an 8.5 billion pula (about 762 million U.S. dollars) budget deficit in 2022, an official announced Thursday.
Peggy Serame, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, briefed stakeholders at the Budget Pitso in Gaborone that COVID-19 has lasted longer than expected and that health sector expenditure is expected to rise due to COVID-19 estimated expenditure.
“As a result, an overall budget deficit of 4 percent of GDP is anticipated for the year 2022 to 2023.”
The mineral-rich country is heavily reliant on diamond mining, which accounts for a fifth of its GDP and more than two-thirds of its foreign exchange earnings. The economy shrank by 8.5 percent in 2020 as a result of a drop in output in both the mining and non-mining sectors caused by COVID-19 travel restrictions, which stifled supply and demand chains as well as domestic and international trade.
In the first quarter of 2021, the economy grew by 0.7 percent compared to the same period in 2020. Enditem