The annual Government Budget is prepared on a financial
year (FY) basis. The FY for the Government runs from 1 April
of one year to 31 March of the following year. For example,
FY2008 is from 1 April 2008 to 31 March 2009.
The Budget serves two purposes:
a. It serves as a record of the approved levels of expenditure
and accountability in the usage of government funds; and
b. It is also a plan of the estimated government revenue and
expenditures for the FY.
Before the FY starts, the Minister for Finance would present
the annual Budget that has been approved by Cabinet to Parliament.
For Budget 2008, this will take place in February 2008. The
Budget Debate and Committee of Supply sessions then follow,
where Members of Parliament can query the Government on the
expenditure of funds in the previous FY, as well as the proposed
Budget for the next FY, for the various ministries and organs
After Parliament passes the Supply Bill, thus giving its
approval of the Budget, the President will need to give his
assent to the Bill before it can come into effect. The President's
role is to safeguard the past reserves of the nation. He may
withhold his assent to the Bill if, in his opinion, the estimated
revenue and expenditure are likely to draw on past reserves.
Once the President gives his assent to the Supply Bill, it
is then enacted as law as the Supply Act. The Act will then
control the amount of money that the Government may spend
in the coming FY, and for what purposes this money may be