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Opinions & Interviews

28 Aug 2018

Belarus prime minister promises balanced state budget in 2019

Belarus prime minister promises balanced state budget in 2019

MINSK, 28 August (BelTA) – The 2019 budget expenditure will be based on revenue, Belarus' Prime Minister Sergei Rumas said at a government meeting to discuss the draft social and economic development forecast, monetary policy and budget for 2019 and the new draft of the Tax Code in Minsk on 28 August, BelTA has learned.

“With regard to the budget, the fundamental requirement that it is balanced remains in place. We cannot spend more than we earn. There will be no expenditures that are not based on revenue in the budget,” Sergei Rumas said.

In 2019 we will have a two-scenario approach to forecasting and budget. The budget will be based on a baseline scenario of economic development. Should the economy generate more income, we will make proposals to the head of state to invest additional income where it is most needed, the prime minister noted.

The government meeting is the final element in the first phase of the work to prepare a package of documents before sending them to the head of state. In accordance with the budget code, it should be done before 1 September. The whole package of the forecast documents was thoroughly reviewed and generally approved at a meeting of the government presidium just over a month ago. All the issues were finalized by the government bodies concerned. An agreement on the key issues was reached during today's meeting.

Sergei Rumas noted that the package of documents takes account of the recent changes such as adjusted estimates for oil prices, economic growth and exchange rates in the countries which are the main foreign trade partners of Belarus. This required some clarification of the main forecast parameters in all documents.

Fulfilling the parameters of the social and economic development program for 2016-2020 remains a priority. Therefore, the meeting will focus on the relevance of the forecast documents for the five-year plan and possible bottlenecks. The agenda of the meeting also includes progress made in reaching the priority goals of the social and economic development program for 2016-2020 (investments, exports and employment).

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