UAE Ministry of Finance announces financial circular for 2013 budget

HE Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, has released financial circular regarding preparations for the 2013 federal budget project to both federal entities and independent bodies.

The initiative follows the UAE Cabinet’s Resolution No. (1/181) issued in the year 2008. It also follows UAE Cabinet Resolution No. (1/73) for the year 2009, which focuses on services and highlights the usage of zero-budgeting systems in preparing for a medium-term plan for 2011-2013 to reflect MoF’s strategic goals in providing the highest returns for financial resources, publishing transparent financial reports, ensuring the optimum use of Federal resources through effective management practices, applying sound financial policies, and achieving positive results and sustainable development for the local community.

The initiative also reflects MoF’s goals of implementing the strategy launched by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum meant to develop Federal Government performance in all sectors, including the financial and administrative domains, to improve government services, promote resource growth and obtain customer satisfaction. Commenting on the issuance of the circular, HE Younis Haji Al Khouri, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Finance (MoF), explained that it was important to ensure that all the information pertaining to the 2013 budget project was up to date to include the latest figures, in line with the structure adopted by UAE ministries and federal authorities.

HE Al Khouri emphasized that recent increases to salaries which were implemented beginning 01/01/2012, as per the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and the UAE Cabinet Resolution No. (294/13 /30) for the year 2011 are to also be included within the budget scheme. HE Al Khouri added that employee databases were to also be updated to reflect all recent activities in the previous period.

HE Al Khouri added that the 2013 budget project was prepared for using the latest technologies and electronic systems, which ensured feasibility and efficiency. The system connected the data entered into it with MoF’s financial and accounting mechanism, enabling the production of unified reports, and to forecast and analyze financial performance of ministries.

HE Al Khouri emphasized that procedures used to prepare the budget plan for 2011-2013 and the templates and tables associated with it are based on regulatory procedures and policies which can be used as a reference for developing budgets according to zero-budgeting principles, which was first implemented in 2011.

The financial circular stressed the importance of focusing on achieving set strategic goals and determined April 15, 2012 as the deadline for presenting the budget project. It also highlighted MoF’s commitment to providing all necessary technical support to any party and to responding to all enquiries from federal authorities, in addition to continuing budget preparation training sessions for all entities that require it.

HE Saeed Al Yateem Executive Director of Revenue and Budget said that the budget for year 2013 was considered the final stage of the 2011-2013 medium-term plan and highlighted the importance of reflecting all activities and updates in 2012. HE Al Yateem also explained that it was important to review these activities against the project structure and to utilize programs and tools that guarantee the implementation of the Federal Government’s strategy on various levels and in different areas.

HE Al Yateem added that a technical support unit was created at MoF, which provides aid to all ministries and Federal authorities in utilizing the new e-budgeting system, and in clarifying all the principles pertaining to the zero-budgeting system and the medium-term 2011-2013 plan.
MoF will be hosting 4 workshops for all ministries and federal entities to fully clarify the steps involved in preparing the annual budget and to address questions.