'The budget won't be imbalanced, it will be as predicted last October'

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni will deliver his much anticipated maiden budget speech in Parliament on Wednesday.

Read: Mboweni will have to make tough political choices in Budget 2019 - economist

Chief economist at Standard Bank, Goolam Ballim takes a look at what South Africans should expect when the minister delivers his speech.

We anticipate a very modest revenue shortfall of about R7 billion. I say modest because, at the last budget, the shortfall was in access of R50 billion.

Goolam Ballim, Chief economist - Standard Bank

We also think that he will be modestly aided by under spending of about R15 billion as many government departments have just been unable to get all their money within their midst through the door. So in short, we don't think that the budget will be imbalanced, it is largely to be as predicted as last October.

Goolam Ballim, Chief economist - Standard Bank

Ballim adds that there have already been hints that the National Treasury is unlikely to introduce additional taxes.

Also read: It's going to be a compromised budget this year, says Bruce Whitfield

In other words, raise Vat or even materially boost personal income tax by raising the marginal tax rate.

Goolam Ballim, Chief econimist - Standard Bank

Ballin notes that rating agencies want to see that the broad contours of the budget as presented in October hold.

The second very significant element is they will be curious as to how Eskom's balance sheet is going to be supported.

Goolam Ballim, Chief econimist - Standard Bank

Listen below to the full interview:


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