According to the 2023 Budget document, expenditure on social grants would increase from R233 billion in 2022/23 to R248.4 billion in 2025/26 due to increases in the number of recipients and the value of the grants.
“Excluding the Covid-19 social relief of distress grant, social grant coverage is expected to increase from about 18.6 million beneficiaries in March 2023 to 19.6 million beneficiaries by March 2026,” it said.
In his 2023 Budget speech, Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana said R30 billion will be used for inflation-linked increases for other social grants.
The old age and disability grants increase by R90 on April 1, 2023, and a further R10 on October 1, 2023. The result is a total increase to R2090, he said.
“The child support grant rises from R480 to R510 on October 1, 2023, while the foster care grant increases from R1070 to R1130 over the same period.
The document said the child support grant and old age grant together account for about 70 percent of total grant expenditure over the medium-term expenditure framework (MTEF) period.
“These two grants will be provided to a total of 17.5 million beneficiaries in 2023/24. Social grants will increase in line with inflation over the medium term,” it said.
The Covid-19 social relief of distress grant will be extended for a year until March 31, 2024, to mitigate the impact of the slow economic recovery and increased poverty due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“In 2023/24, R35.7 billion is allocated to the Department of Social Development to fund the grant, while R400 million is allocated to the South African Social Security Agency to administer it,” the document stated.
According to the document, over the MTEF period, the allocation for provincial departments of social development will increase at an average annual rate of 3.3 percent, from R21.3 billion in 2022/23 to R23.5 billion in 2025/26.
“Work to support the social and economic inclusion of women, youth, and people living with disabilities will continue over the medium term. The Department of Women, Youth, and Persons with Disabilities is allocated R2.7 billion over the next three years,” it said.