Johor tables surplus budget for 2020

Johor Menteri Besar Dr Sahruddin Jamal says the state is also trying to reduce its debt with the federal government. (Bernama pic)

ISKANDAR PUTERI: The Johor government today tabled a surplus budget of RM2.36 million for 2020, its 10th since 2011.

It was the second surplus budget tabled by the Pakatan Harapan government and the first by Johor’s 17th menteri besar, Dr Sahruddin Jamal.

According to Sahruddin, the state’s estimated revenue in 2020 would be RM1.785 billion against projected spending of RM1.783 billion.

“In the Johor 2020 Budget, the state government has listed 183 focal points for implementation,” he said when tabling the budget at the Johor Legislative Assembly in Kota Iskandar here today.

In the Johor 2019 Budget, a total of 207 focus points were highlighted, with 194 focus points implemented as of Nov 15. The remaining 13 focus points are in the initial stage of implementation.

“The rationale behind the reduction in the number of focal points in 2020 is because the state government is focusing more on specific sectors that focus on the people’s well-being and economic growth,” he said.

The Johor menteri besar said the state government’s estimated revenue of RM1.785 billion in 2020 would be the highest revenue estimate in the state’s budget history.

“This means that the estimated revenue for next year will increase by 15.02% compared with 2019,” he said.

According to Sahruddin, a total of RM963.13 million, which excludes contributions from the various trust funds under Section 10 of the Financial Procedure Act 1957-Act 6, would be allocated for operating expenditure, comprising emoluments (RM515.95 million), services and supply (RM273.45 million), assets (RM17.83 million) and other expenses (RM155.90 million).

For next year’s development expenditure, the state government would allocate RM780 million through contributions to the consolidated development fund, an increase of RM180 million from RM600 million in 2019.

Sahruddin said Johor was also trying to reduce its debt with the federal government with the state government loans expected to decline to RM222.39 million by Dec 31.

“This is due to the full repayment of loans as scheduled and the adjustment of some of the state government’s loans with the federal government, from loan financing to grant financing.

“It involves the RM100 Layang 1 Water Transfer Project and loan write-off on the Rural Water Supply Project, involving RM189 million,” he said.

According to him, the Johor state government, through the Johor State Treasury (PNJ), the Johor State Economic Planning Division (BPENJ) and the Johor Water Regulation Body (Bakaj), will also hold discussions with the management of Asset Air Bhd (PAAB) to resolve the remaining water debt transfer balance of RM145 million.

If the balance of the water debt transfer is implemented, then the state government’s loan is expected to be reduced to RM71.71 million by Dec 31, 2020, he said.