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Lithuanian Government to start discussing 2013 budget on Monday

Tomo Urbelionio/BFL nuotr. / Litai
Šaltinis: BNS

The Lithuanian government is to start discussing a draft budget law for next year and related bills on Monday, a day after general elections, with the package to be submitted to the Seimas as soon as Wednesday.

The Cabinet is to discuss a draft central government budget and national budget, which also includes local governments, as well as draft budgets of the State Social Insurance Fund (Sodra) and the Compulsory Health Insurance Fund, according to the agenda of the meeting, which is available on the government's website.

Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius said earlier this week that the government would discuss the draft budget after the package had been approved by ministries.

17 October is a deadline for submitting draft budget plans to the Seimas for approval.

Normally, in a non-election year, the Cabinet has two weeks to discuss the bills.

In 2008, the then government led by the Social Democratic Party began to discuss a draft budget for 2009 on 8 October, but the budget estimates were not made available to the public until 13 October, a day after general elections.

The government must submit a draft budget, worked out by the Finance Ministry, to the Seimas for approval no later than 75 calendar days before the end of the budget year.

This year's central government budget projects 18.016 billion litas (EUR 5.22 b) in annual revenues, excluding 7.131 billion litas in EU funds and other aid, with expenditures planned at 18.624 billion litas.

Lithuania's updated 2012 Convergence Program, approved by the government in April, aims to keep the fiscal deficit within 3 percent of GDP this year and cut it to 2 percent of GDP next year. The deficit should narrow further to 1 percent in 2014 before being balanced in 2015.

Finance Minister Ingrida Šimonytė told the media in early October that the 2 percent deficit target for 2013 had to be raised to 2.5 percent of GDP, or by around 2.8 billion litas, in order not to increase taxes and not to cut public spending.

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