Over the first quarter of this year, Tajikistan’s national budget has received some 145 million somoni less than originally planned.
In January-March, the budget reportedly stood at 4.862 billion somoni, or 97.1% of the planned volume.
It means that the budget was expected to receive 5.007 billion somoni over the first three months of this year. Fiscal bodies reportedly failed to collect additionally 145 million somoni over the period.
The country’s budget has been receiving less than its due for three years running. Experts attribute this trend to impoverishment of the population.
Over the first eleven months of 2015, the budget was monthly receiving 3-4% less than it was originally planned.
Despite recommendations of international financial institutions the Tajik authorities refused to review the budget parameters.
Over the last two months of 2015, the fiscal bodies, however, managed not only to fulfill but also to overfulfill the income targets.
As it turned out later, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the European Union (EU) have helped Tajikistan cope with that task. They have allocated $66 million to support the country’s budget.
In 2016, the budget received more than 781 million somoni (equivalent to $100 million at the exchange rate for the beginning of 2017) less.
The MoF specialists have called ongoing decrease in the country’s external trade turnover a reason for budget arrears.
For its part, the Customs Service says a number of factors have negatively impacted fulfillment of the customs payment target. This is, in particular, decrease in the volume of goods being produced in Tajikistan (cement, carpets, building materials, farm produce, and so forth).
Besides, seasonal operation of the Kulma crossing on the Tajik-Chinese border has negatively impacted fulfillment of the customs payment target, according to the Customs Service.
According to the data from the Agency for Statistics under the President of Tajikistan, imports of goods over the first quarter of this year have amounted to $545.6 million, down by 19.4%, or by $131.7 million YoY.
Meanwhile, independent experts attribute decrease in imports to deterioration of the financial situation of the population.
Over the past two years, the volume of Tajikistan’s external trade turnover has dropped by nearly $1.3 billion due to decrease in imports. (News.tj/Business World Magazine)