•The data presented by the budget controller also showed there is a increase of Sh18.09 billion which translates to 2.9 percent on Interest Payments on Domestic Debt.
•This has seen the state also increase allowances and salaries for select state officials by sh10 million.
The government seems to have abandoned its austerity measures push leading to the tripling of miscellaneous expenditure for the three months to September.
Miscellaneous expenses shot to Sh60 million in the first three months of 2023 -24 financial year from Sh15 million.
This is an increase of Sh45 million (290.3 per cent), in a move that has also seen the state officials increase allowances and salaries for select state officials to a tune of sh10 million.
In submissions to the committee on privatisation, the Controller of Budget Maragret Nyakang'o revealed that the budget for several agencies and MDAs (ministries, departments and agencies) has been revised due to challenging micro economic environment.
According to the CoB this increase in guaranteed debt suggest that there may be some risks in terms of the change in the financial markets, which may be due to exchange rate fluctuations which impact on cost of guaranteed debt.
“The increase in the Supplementary Estimates for external debt service of Sh216.67 billion (principal redemption and interest repayment) to Sh839.14 billion from Sh622.47 billion is partly attributed to the depreciation of the Kenya shilling,” Nyakang’o told the committee.
“For instance, the exchange rate was Sh136.0 to the dollar as of 30th April 2023 before it depreciated to Sh151.4 as of 7th November 2023, translating to an 11.3 percent loss in the value of the shilling.”
The substantial increase indicates potential challenges in estimating and controlling miscellaneous service costs.
Nyakang’o revealed that guaranteed debt repayments falls under this category, which has increased by of Sh1.74 billion (10.1 per cent).
“Unexplained salary adjustments contribute to variances in the salaries and allowances category, impacting the overall personnel cost. These incremental changes may be attributed to salary adjustments of Constitutional office holders,”
It now appears the government has added a cushion in on its supplementary budget which might be an indication of a projected further drop in the value of the Kenyan shilling against the US dollar.
She however noted that the Salaries and Allowances items have significant unexplained budget allocations, which are later revised downwards in the consecutive supplementary budgets.
The data presented by the budget controller also showed there is an increase of Sh18.09 billion which translates to 2.9 percent on Interest Payments on Domestic Debt.
An upswing that has been attributed to higher interest rates or increased borrowing requirements.
There is a rise of Sh125.61 billion on external debt Interest payments which translates to 85.5 percent.
This indicates a noteworthy surge in external debt servicing costs, probably influenced by global economic conditions and exchange rate fluctuations.
“Cumulatively, there is a Positive Variance of Sh143.7 billion or 18.5 percent in domestic and external debt interest payments suggesting a significant rise in total interest payments costs,” added Nyakang’o.
Debt repayments ate the largest chunk of Kenya’s expenditure in the past three months.
The public debt received the highest exchequer issues of Sh440.4 billion, which accounts for 89.3 per cent of all exchequer issues for the period to service public debt.
Public Debt repayments and Pensions and Gratuities have the highest expenditure percentages.
The overall absorption rate for the CFS stands at 26.8 per cent against the expected average absorption rate for the four months at 33.3 per cent. The Subscriptions to International Organisations item has no allocation and issues to date.
“There is a Positive Variance of Kshs.6 billion (1.6 per cent) in domestic debt. The increase may be attributed to changes in economic conditions or refinancing needs," said the CoB
Nyakang'o said there is a Positive Variance of Kshs.91.06 billion (19.1 per cent) on External Debt principal redemption. The substantial rise in external debt redemption, possibly influenced by global economic conditions,” added the CoB.