Gov’t increases Development Budget to fill Infrastructure Gaps

  • Minister Serame unveils a development budget of 12.73bn for infrastructure
  • Warns that govt will watch out for corrupt practices and calls for public vigilance
  • Green technology built into plans for Botswana becoming net exporter of electricity


In the 2023/2024 financial year, the government will increase the development budget significantly in order to fill infrastructure gaps and implement projects necessary to unlock constraints to economic growth, the Minister of Finance, Peggy Serame, has said.
Delivering the 2023 Budget Speech this week, Minister Serame noted that the government will continue to address expenditure inefficiencies and weaknesses in revenue collection by strengthening tax audit capabilities and leveraging on the Public Private Partnership (PPP) and Development Manager Model approaches.


Significant increase
“Overall, the development expenditure will be increased by 27.88 percent in the 2023/2024 financial year, compared to the budget for the current year,” she said. “This significant increase in the development budget may pose another risk of corrupt activities in its execution.

“Government will therefore continue to put in place risk mitigating measures and also ensure that the law is enforced effectively. I also call upon the public to be vigilant and assist in safeguarding our national resources.”

P12.73bn for infrastructure
Serame said a development budget of P12.73 billion is being proposed for implementation of infrastructure development projects.

She explained that the largest share of the development budget for implementation of infrastructure projects is influenced by the recognition that infrastructure development is a critical enabler of enhanced productivity and sustainable economic growth.

“This will also promote the active participation of the private sector, women, youth and citizens more generally, all in pursuit of building resilience, strengthening inclusiveness and increasing growth,” she noted.

“Let me reiterate that since Botswana is strategically positioned in southern Africa, this presents a great opportunity for us to play a significant role in the development of regional infrastructure projects, as we did with the Kazungula Bridge.

Water supply
“It is therefore crucial for all those involved in the delivery of infrastructure projects to ensure that this is done efficiently and effectively.”

Regarding water supply and sanitation challenges across the country, the finance minister spoke of continuation of implementation of major projects in the 2023/2024 financial year.

“These include, among others, rehabilitation of water networks especially in areas prone to frequent breakdowns such as Kanye and Molepolole,” she noted.


Becoming a net exporter of electricity
Meanwhile, Serame said to enable Botswana to become a net exporter of electricity, implementation of projects under the Integrated Resource Plan will be fast-tracked to ensure security of electricity supply.

“The Integrated Resource Plan encompasses mainly green technology projects geared to addressing, amongst others, the issue of climate change whilst reducing the country’s high electricity import bill,” she noted.

“The current target is to raise the contribution of renewable energy in total power generation from one percent to 30 percent by 2030.”