There is no evaluation of this support, and the shortfall persists. Experts: Is it possible to create the budget without the aid of grants and other resources?

Al-Anbat -

Al-Anbat- Sabaa Alsukkar 

Translated by: Mays Alshawabkeh 

The Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation and the US Agency for International Development recently signed a US Annual Monetary Grant Agreement, valued at US $845.1 million, to support the budget. 

According to economic researcher Husam Ayish, grants and aid from the United States and European nations improve the government's ability to spend by reducing the fiscal deficit, which lowers debt and carries additional liabilities. In accordance with public budget legislation, grants and assessed aid are considered public income, along with other sources of funding like direct and indirect taxes, fees, and overseas grants. 

It is crucial to understand that the budget deficit is calculated both before and after grants, explaining that the amount of grants received by the Kingdom is equal to the estimated amount of debt that the nation needs to borrow to cover the overall budget deficit. While grants and assistance are crucial for reducing the current deficit, it is still expected to be higher than 3 billion dinars for the current fiscal year. (2023-2029) was increased to $1.45 billion annually while affecting budget revenue more strongly. 

Ayish drew attention to the fact that not all aid funds the budget, but rather divides some to support the military corps budget and the other to USAID, which spends some of it through its programs with civil society institutions, indicating that the issues with everything he said are that no one strategically assesses the results of such assistance, indicating that the return of such assistance is "Unknown" in the efficacy of their use. On the other side, one would question how a government budget could be created without relying on these grants and the help that is meant to serve as supplemental support but is instead viewed as a source of money by the government. 

Ayish demanded that the House of Representatives inquire about the inclusion of such grants and assistance in the budget, even though the Kingdom's ability to control its value is obviously almost "very little" and the nation has friendly relations with donor countries, even though the terms of commitment in aid belong to donor countries. 

There was no question that external assistance improved the Government's financial indicators; the IMF is required to base its assessment on this fact in accordance with the various reviews agreed to with the Government, and progress is evaluated in the programmed set forth by the fund and the government based on these audits, which take into account grants and assistance and their effects on the State's budget deficit. Demonstrating that the State's success in the program is releasing additional government funding in the form of a loan provided by the fund to the State to carry out the specific programs, and that these audits allow the Government to obtain certificates from the Monetary Fund, which would open up opportunities for additional debt to fill the gap. 

For his part, economist Wajdy Almakhamra reaffirmed that any potential foreign assistance for the nation would speed up the economic cycle by transferring funds to the state treasury, where they could be divided into portions to support capital expenditures, as well as support for specific infrastructure or sector support projects that would reflect sectors that would stimulate growth. Growth has improved in some economic sectors, supporting their orientation, indicating that assistance and grants are shared as part of current and capital expenditures, and investment in some projects that generate a return on the national economy. 

In addition, he said in a special statement to Al-Anbat that the Kingdom must now support the budget in order to reduce the budget deficit, which could benefit the nation by removing it from the environment of borrowing to support or finance its public budget deficit. He added that U.S. and other aid could be beneficial in supporting the government's budget and some of its economic sectors, as it may decide.

Similar to that, the US grant is a component of the US Economic Aid Program for the Government, which is a part of the UK-US Third Memorandum of Understanding (2018-2022). It will help with the implementation of the comprehensive modernization project, which has three political, economic, and administrative tracks, which is being led by His Majesty King Abdullah II.
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