KZN gets the lion’s share

2010-02-18 00:00

KWAZULU-NATAL once again received the lion’s share of the equitable share of the national budget compared with all other provincial allocations.

The province is receiving a total of almost R68.5 billion R68,485 billion in 2010/11 as Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan ramped up allocations to provinces and municipalities, signalling his intention to maintain spending on economic and social services despite the decline in tax revenue.

In terms of equitable share allocations, the Msunduzi Municipality will receive about R267 million in 2010/11, a 33,6% increase from the 2009/10 allocation of almost R200 million.

The eThekweni Municipality’s allocation amounts to R1,4 billion in 2010/11 from about R1,1 billion.

KZN will receive a total of R56,7 billion in the equitable share allocation, as well as a further R11,7 billion in conditional grants.

This is about 22% of the total allocation.

Last year, KZN received about R49,99 billion in equitable share “revenue” and a further R8,82 billion in conditional grants. The total 2009/10 KZN allocation in terms of the total transfers to provinces amounted to R58,81 billion compared with R68,48 billion in 2010/11.

Gauteng received the second highest allocation with R58,90 billion in 2010/11, followed by the Eastern Cape with R47,58 billion.

Total transfers to provinces in 2010/11 amount to R322,85 billion.

The equitable share constitutes the main source of revenue for provinces.

Pietermaritzburg-based economist Clive Coetzee explained that the province does generate its own revenue, mainly in the form of casino and gambling taxes, as well as vehicle licence revenue.

KZN and other provinces also generate income through the sale of goods and services across different provincial departments.

In KZN, these three sources generated more than R1,57 billion in 2009/10.

Coetzee explained that the emphasis is clearly on service delivery implementation.

“It’s part of the move to decentralise the budget. The people that deliver services get the bulk of the budget. He is [Gordhan] giving more emphasis to implementing agencies.”

Gordhan stressed that most of the additional money in this year’s budget will go to provinces and municipalities for education, health, municipal infrastructure and human settlements, reflecting the government’s commitment to sustaining growth in spending on its key priorities.

The national treasury also noted that R133,8 million has been added to the housing disaster relief grant in 2010/11 to address storm damage to subsidised houses in KZN caused by heavy rains. The area of Bulwer in KZN was particularly hard hit by storms recently.

KwaZulu-Natal: R51,049 billion

Gauteng: R39,6 billionEastern Cape: R36,8 billionLimpopo: R30,6 billionWestern Cape: R21,404 billionNorth West: R16,5 billionFree State: R14,5 billionNorthern Cape: R6,3 billion

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