The UAE has approved the federal budget for 2024-2026 worth Dhs192bn ($52.3bn), according to the state-run news agency, WAM.
The federal budget estimates expenditures of Dhs64.1bn in 2024, up 1.6 per cent from estimates for 2023 and forecasts total revenues of Dhs65.7bn, up 3.3 per cent over from this year.
“The federal general budget reflects the strength of the national economy and the balance of expenditures and revenues,” said Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Prime Minister, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance.
Sheikh Maktoum said the budget ensures the achievement of sustainable development by adopting the highest degrees of financial flexibility and efficiency for the federal government.
He highlighted that the UAE is committed to supporting vital sectors and accelerating growth to ensure that the country’s citizens and residents have access to the necessities of a decent life, including health, education, and social care.
UAE’s budget allocation
Social development and benefits account for 42 per cent (Dhs26.7bn) of the federal budget in 2024, followed by government affairs at 39 per cent or (Dhs25.2bn).
Mohamed bin Hadi Al Hussaini, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, said the federal budget reflects the strength of the national economy and the abundance and sustainability of resources to finance developmental, economic, and social projects.
Nearly 16 per cent (Dhs10.2bn) of the total general budget will go to public and university education, 8 per cent (Dhs5.2bn) will be allocated to healthcare and community protection, 6 per cent (Dhs3.6bn) will go towards social affairs while 10 per cent (Dhs6.1bn) of the 2024 budget has been allotted to pensions.
The UAE sold $1.5bn in bonds in September, marking the country’s return to international debt markets for the first time after a year. The notes will be rated AA- by Fitch and Aa2 by Moody’s, in line with the credit rating of the UAE.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai said the UAE Cabinet also issued a decree to appoint members of the board of the Financial Stability Council.
The council was established earlier this year to monitor risks and deal with financial crises. The board of directors will be headed by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE, and Minister of the Presidential Court.
Earlier in September, the UAE government said the country posted a budget surplus
in 2022 as revenues grew by a record 31.8 per cent and expenditures jumped by 6.1 per cent, amounting to a projected Dhs427.1bn.