31 Mar 2015 21:30pm
WINDHOEK, 31 MAR (NAMPA) - A total of N.dollars 34.41 billion has been allocated to the economic and infrastructure sectors over the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) 2015/16 to 2017/18 to stimulate growth and enhance the competitiveness of the economy.
This will be possible through developing robust transport and logistics sectors, Minister of Finance Calle Schlettwein said while tabling the 2015/2016 National Budget of N.dollars 67.08 billion under the theme No Namibian must feel left out in Parliament on Tuesday.
He said railway and roads rehabilitation, the expansion of the Port of Walvis Bay, the Mass Housing project and Kudu gas-to-Power project are the two flagship projects over the MTEF period.
These allocations will cater for growth-enhancing infrastructure in the logistics and energy sectors as well as continued interventions in the agricultural sector to boost national food security, Schlettwein said.
The minister said a total of N.dollars 4.93 billion over the MTEF will support the balance sheets of the Namibian power utility (NamPower) and National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (Namcor) for the Kudu Gas-to-Power project.
The project is estimated to cost about US.dollars 1.2 billion (about N.dollars 14.8 billion), and aims to increase power-generation in Namibia.
Construction is estimated to commence in the first quarter of 2015, while the successful implementation and commissioning is scheduled for the end of 2017 - latest in the first quarter of 2018.
Upon completion, it will be the first large power station to have been developed in Namibia by the Namibian government.
The main elements of the project are the development of the Kudu gas field and the construction of an 800 megawatt (MW) combined cycle natural gas-fired power station near Oranjemund in southern Namibia.
Schlettwein further said that some N.dollars 1.25 billion over the MTEF is allocated for the national mass housing project, adding that the government will issue a sovereign guarantee to the tune of N.dollars 2 billion for the National Housing Enterprise (NHE) to access funding for this vital project.
The NHE has been entrusted with constructing 185 000 houses within 18 years, in line with Vision 2030, at a total investment of N.dollars 45 billion.
This programme will be implemented in phases, with an annual investment of N.dollars 2.5 million per phase.
Schlettwein said N.dollars 3.27 billion over the MTEF for the roads projects is in addition to N.dollars 1.7 billion to be raised by the Road Fund Administration, while N.dollars 945.85 million is allocated for railway projects with funding outside the scope of the State Revenue Fund to the tune of N.dollars 3.79 billion over the MTEF.
A total of N.dollars7.75 billion is allocated to the agricultural sector to cater for among others, the Green Scheme programme and other interventions in the sector over the MTEF.