Thursday, 25 November 2010
Dáil Éireann Debate
155. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the extent of any over or under expenditure, capital or current, by Vote, heading or subheading to date in 2010 in tabular form; the reason for any surplus or shortfall; if expenditure to date in each case is in line with budgetary projections; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44659/10]
Minister for Foreign Affairs (Deputy Micheál Martin): My Department is responsible for two Votes — Vote 28 (Foreign Affairs) and Vote 29 (International Cooperation). Under Vote 28, I expect there will be an overspend of approximately €15.2 million on Subhead I (Contributions to International Organisations) in 2010. This will be partly offset by savings of €1.8 million on the Administrative Budget and €1 million in Subhead C (Support for Irish Emigrant Services). A Supplementary Estimate is required to cover the remaining shortfall of €12.4 million and it is proposed that the necessary funds will be found by reducing expenditure under Vote 29. The shortfall on Subhead I is mainly due to increased costs in Ireland’s contributions to United Nations Peacekeeping Operations. These payments are assessed on an ongoing basis by the United Nations and are mandatory in nature.
The level of contribution is difficult to forecast. It is affected by changes to the overall budgets at the UN, currency fluctuations and adjustments to Ireland’s contribution key. I do not expect any significant underspend or overspend in other subheads under Vote 28. In terms of receipts, the current trend suggests that Appropriations in Aid for the Department will exceed the estimated amount by approximately €1m. This arises largely from a higher than expected number of passport applications. Under Vote 29, expenditure patterns are in line with budget projections. A full spend is forecast across all programme subheads. A reduction in overall expenditure of €12.4 million will be necessary in order to provide funding for the Supplementary Estimate being proposed for Vote 28.
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