Gauteng closes funding gaps with partnerships

06 March 2018 - 10:48 By Penwell Dlamini
Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy delivers budget speech.
Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy delivers budget speech.
Image: Gallo Images / Daily Sun / Jabu Kumalo

The Gauteng provincial government will use partnerships with private sector and civil society in order to close its funding gaps created by the cut in equitable share and conditional grants from the National Treasury.

This was revealed by Gauteng finance MEC Barbara Creecy when she tabled her budget in the provincial legislature‚ in the Johannesburg city centre on Tuesday.

Creecy said the national budget presented last month showed that there would be cuts to the province’s equitable share and conditional grants.

She added that with the current high levels of migration to Gauteng‚ health and education would still face spending pressures.

“To close the gaps we are primarily dependent on provincial revenue and off-budget investment and partnerships. We will not pass these cuts on to provincial departments. Instead we will use our own provincial resources to absorb these cuts and mitigate spending pressures.

“Since 2014‚ provincial treasury has raised a total of R21-billion in own revenue‚ mainly from motor vehicle licenses‚ patient fees‚ gambling and liquor licenses and interest from our short-term investments‚” said Creecy in her speech to the provincial board.

In preparation for the 2018/19 budget‚ provincial treasury asked all departments to submit information on partnership agreements which bring in support from the private sector and civil society in the provision of public services.

“I can share with this house today that our departments have more than R400-million worth of service delivery partnerships. The largest contribution to off-budget investment in the built environment has been made by the department of human settlements.

“To date‚ this department has launched seven mega human settlement programmes that will collectively provide more than 80 000 housing units. These projects have collectively attracted R50.7-billion in private sector investment‚” said Creecy.

The R400-million are service delivery projects to be implemented by various departments in the province.

“By June this year‚ seven projects co-ordinated by the Gauteng Infrastructure Financing Agency will have reached financial close and be in the implementation phase. This includes a jewellery manufacturing precinct in Ekurhuleni‚ the West Rand logistics hub‚ Lindley waste treatment works in Tshwane‚ the Trigen/Co-gen plants at Chris Hani Baragwanath hospital‚ the Tshwane innovation hub with its enterprise buildings 2 and 3 and the rooftop solar panels project‚” said Creecy.

All these capital infrastructure projects are collectively worth R4-billion.