Saturday, April 20, 2024
NewsFederal budget snub leaves IPDC hanging, parks in Amhara region incomplete

Federal budget snub leaves IPDC hanging, parks in Amhara region incomplete

Corporation considering real estate venture in capital to mobilize revenues

Heads of the Industrial Park Development Corporation (IPDC) claim the government’s decision to withhold its budget for the current fiscal year is preventing them from finalizing construction works at two parks located in the conflict-battered Amhara region.

Aklilu Tadesse, the new CEO of the Corporation, told Parliament’s standing committee for Public Expenditure Administration and Control that the federal government did not approve a budget of close to four billion birr requested by the IPDC for the 2023/24 fiscal year.

He told MPs the budget was needed to construct a new headquarters in Addis Ababa, on one of two plots the Corporation holds in the Hayahulet and Bole areas. The funding, according to the CEO, was also supposed to go towards final-stage construction works in the Bahir Dar and Kombolcha industrial parks, particularly for water treatment plants.

The standing committee convened on March 25, 2024, to review an audit report on the status of waste management in industrial parks. It reveals a number of parks under the Corporation are discharging waste directly into the environment.

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Officials from the Ministry of Finance, Federal Auditor General, Public Enterprises Holding and Administration (PEHA) and others were also present during the session.

IPDC heads disclosed to The Reporter the Corporation missed out on its budget as federal officials expect it to raise funding internally via the rent of sheds to manufacturers and other sources of revenue. However, the Corporation has been unable to keep up with its expenses.

“IPDC’s internal revenues can cover minor expenses but not capital expenses. The government is expected to allocate a capital budget to IPDC but it has decided to prioritize mega-projects and leave state-owned enterprises to use their own revenues for their budgets,” said a manager at IPDC.

The Corporation’s trade license allows it to get involved in the real estate business. The manager revealed it is in discussions with contractors and investors to build highrises in the capital. The Corporation is considering using its plots in the capital for real estate developments.

However, Aklilu and his management team hope to see the government reconsider their request in a supplementary budget.

“There are ongoing talks between IPDC and the Ministry of Finance to consider the allocation of funds to the Corporation if the government is going to reshuffle its budget before the financial year ends,” said the manager.

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