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Parliament adopts Budget 2019 at the first reading (OBZOR)

November 7, 2018 | 20:57 | FOCUS News Agency

Photo: Information Agency

Parliament adopts Budget 2019 at the first reading (OBZOR) Photo: FOCUS Information Agency

Sofia. Parliament adopted the 2019 first reading election with 115 votes agreed and 85 opposed. The budget goes with the votes of GERB and the United Patriots. It is supported by one MEP and one independent MP. The "anti" budget was chosen by BSP and MRF. Voting in plenary was attended by almost all cabinet ministers.
2019 Budget Priorities are social policy, education, defense and income policies. Finance Minister Vladislav Goranov said: "The budget for 2019 is not pre-election. We are working on the pre-election budget, but we will look for it by the end of 2020." "Election, at least as we see the government, will be in 2021," he said . Against critics that there were no reforms in the budget, Goranov said the government was ready to discuss any proposed reforms that were not an end in itself.
BSP opposes the financial framework next year. Left leader Kornelia Ninova said Budget 2019 was a budget for stagnation and inadequacy that was being made to survive the government. According to him, next year the government will plunder other profitable state assets in the economy. The MRF also opposes next year's budget. Deputy Chairperson of the MRF Governor Jordan Tsonev pointed out that the budget does not reflect the country's economic development cycle and does not support growth. He pointed out that by 2019 budget planning will continue to be inadequate, with high capital expenditures and surpluses, which will be spent with the decision of the Council of Ministers.
The revenue budget will be 43.8 billion leva, and in 2021 it is estimated to reach 47.5 billion levs. Deficit of 0.5% of GDP is set. GDP growth is projected to increase to 3.7% in 2019. Unemployment is expected to decline to 4.8%. Costs in 2019 will be 44.4 billion lev, and in 2021 it is estimated to reach 47.5 billion lev. The budget provides 40.4 million lev for heating assistance, 50% more than in 2018. BGN 150 million will be given to people with disabilities and 7 million BGN for orphans without the right to retire a survivor. Next year's defense spending will reach 1.8 billion leva, which is 1.58% of the country's GDP. The funds will be allocated to modernization projects of the Air Force, Army and Navy. In the following year, funding for staff in the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of Justice will be increased. Municipal income will increase by 120.8 million leva compared to projected for 2018. The minimum wage will increase from 510 to 560 leva. 10% more is wages and social security contributions for civil servants. Teacher salaries will be 20% higher, and non-teaching staff salaries by 10%. There will also be an increase in funds intended for first to fourth graders. With more than half a billion leva, more funds will be available for the municipality. In 2019, government debt is estimated to decline from 22.2 to 20 billion lev. Thus Bulgaria will be the third lowest debt in the European Union. The public sector consolidated debt will be in the range of 24.3-23.5 billion BGN.

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