Budget and Accounts Committee discusses 2016 budgets of five ministries

Damascus, SANA – The Budget and Accounts Committee at the People’s Assembly discussed on Saturday the 2016 budgets of the Information, Local Administration, Housing and Urban Development, Finance, and Water Resources Ministries.

The Information Ministry’s 2016 investment budget is set at SYP 5,284,000,000, and the Local Administration Ministry’s budget is set at SYP 20,862300,000, while the Housing Ministry’s budget is set at 3,140,600,000, the budget of the Finance Ministry is 6,725,000,000, and the Water Resources Ministry budget is 19 billion.

The Local Administration Ministry’s budget will be divided among maintenance and rehabilitation of existing facilities (33%), finishing projects that were launched (65%), and new projects (2%).

Meanwhile, SYP 185 million of the Housing Ministry’s budget will go towards planning, rehabilitating unregulated housing zones, research, and IT, while 2.915 billion will go towards housing projects, in addition to 37.6 million for regional planning and 3 million for real-estate development and investment.

During the meetings, Deputy Prime Minister for Services Affairs, Local Administration Minister Omar Ghalwanji said that the Ministry is providing support to around 1,350 separate administrative units, in addition to its role in repairing facilities damaged by terrorism and relief efforts, as it is in charge of over 450 temporary housing centers and distributes food and health packages.

He also said that the Ministry is focusing on the sanitations sector, and that it plans to add 500 new busses to the public transportation fleet in Syria within the rest of 2015 and 2016, in addition to working towards the computerization and archiving of real-estate work.

In turn, Housing and Urban Development Minister Mohammad Walid Ghazal said the Ministry has been allocating large plots of lands for housing projects, and that it will play a large role in the reconstruction process.

Finance Minister Ismael Ismael noted that the projects of the 2015 budgets either covered construction or technology, and that there’s no possibility of constructing new buildings due to current government directives, nor procuring spare parts and new software for ATMs due to the economic sanctions imposed on Syria.

Meanwhile, Water Resources Minister Kamal al-Sheikha underlined the Ministry’s efforts to provide drinking water in Aleppo province, among other projects and endeavors.

Hazem Sabbagh

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