South Sudan lawmakers approve 1.6 bln USD budget



JUBA, Aug. 21 (Xinhua) -- South Sudanese lawmakers on Wednesday finally passed the 2019/20 fiscal budget estimated at 208.16 billion pounds (1.6 billion U.S. dollars) after previously postponing it over failure to pay outstanding salaries of civil servants.

Anthony Lino Makana, speaker of Parliament, said the lawmakers resolved to pass the much-awaited budget after deliberations.

The budget will be mainly financed through local revenue collection but the country is struggling to increase production of crude oil, months after the signing of the peace deal in September 2018.

The country depends heavily on oil revenue to finance its fiscal budget, but oil production had been disrupted since the outbreak of conflict in December 2013.

According to an overview by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), South Sudan's gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow 8.1 percent in 2019/20 and 6.6 percent in 2020/2021 from 3.4 percent in 2018/19.