The finance and budget commission of the Wolesi Jirga (House of Representatives) and the Ministry of Finance on Wednesday made some progress toward passing the budget for the next fiscal year.
The head of Parliament’s finance and budget commission said that the government has approved a slight increase in the salaries of the teachers and the civil servants based on the recommendation of Parliament.
Based on the recommendation, 2,000 Afs will be added to the salaries of employees between grades 1 through 8.
“The budget is stuck in the finance and budget commission for amendments, or for a deal,” said Naseer Farahi, an MP.
On Wednesday, the lawmakers in the general session of Parliament expressed their mixed views about the budget impasse.
“There is no space for someone to declare himself as champion—an increase in the salaries of the teachers was the demand of all of us,” said Mir Rahman Rahmani, the speaker of the Wolesi Jirga.
“This is a good news—an increase in the salaries of teachers and civil servants up to 2,000 Afs from the start of Hamal (March) is good,” said MP Mir Afghan Safai.
“We will also deduct from the salaries of the high-level government officials—that savings that will be made there can be added to the salaries of the teachers and the low-grade government employees,” said Abdul Habib Zadran, deputy minister of finance.
“The mechanism will take some time—but the salary increase will be implemented starting in Hamal (March),” said MP Ahmad Eshchi.
The finance and budget commission of Parliament and the Ministry of Finance are expected to continue their discussions on the remaining disputed points over the fiscal budget on Saturday and Sunday next week.
“Issues around the loans, the projects for the year 1399 (2020) that failed to secure votes from the parliament, and the issue of newly established entities will be under discussion,” said Sediq Ahmad Osmani, a member of the parliament’s finance and budget commission.
“Their red line was the same increase in salary—we hope that it is included in the budget document and sent to the parliament next week,” said Sayed Ali Kazimi, deputy State Minister on Parliamentary Affairs.
The Afghan parliament has so far rejected the budget two times citing at least 19 shortcomings in the document.