Foreign Affairs seeks N$900m budget approval

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has urged Parliament to pass its N$900.783m budget allocation as presented in the 2014-15 National Budget.

According to the Finance ministry, 16.6% or N$150m of funds allocated to Foreign Affairs, is to be directed towards capital projects at diplomatic missions and the construction of a new headquarters.

The remaining 83% is expected to be channelled towards its operations.

Foreign affairs Minister Netumbo Nandi- Ndaitwah in a statement said projects to be pursued during the period under review include, buying and construction of chanceries , residences ,as well as maintenance of older buildings owned by her department.

She said of the 47 properties acquired since Independence by her Ministry, one is under construction while nine were renovated during 2013-14 financial year.

“Regarding the Ministry’s headquarters, those of you who visit the Ministry, would agree with me that, the building does not in any way project a positive image to our foreign visitors. A lot of resources have been spent over the years to bring it to an acceptable level, however, since it was built many years ago, and for a different reason it can never be brought to the required standard of the Ministry of Foreign affairs,” she stressed.

The remaining N$ 750.78m is to be allotted towards projects run under the various program of the Ministry, such as N$20.7m for the Regional and Bilateral Affairs Department, aimed at fostering bilateral relation between Namibia and its development partners.

N$39m has been earmarked for multilateral policy coordination.

 “Our bilateral relations impacts on our success at Sadc, Sacu, AU and the Commonwealth amongst others. It is therefore pertinent and imperative that Namibia continues to enhance her stature internationally.”

 Ndaitwah commended the Finance minister for the 2014-15 budget crafted underthe theme “Growing the economy and optimising development outcomes”.

 

“I fully concur with this theme, as it’s in line with the focus of our foreign policy, which is centred on economic development,” she said.