Bulgarian parliament adopts 2013 budget draft on first reading.

By bne IntelliNews October 29, 2012
Bulgarian parliament passed on first reading the 2013 budget draft that seeks to keep the budget deficit at 1.3% of economic output. The budget is based on a 1.2% economic growth projection even though the government expects the economy to expand by 1.9% in 2013, finance minister Simeon Djankov said. Budget revenues are projected at BGN 30.6bn (EUR 15.6bn), or 37.5% of GDP and by BGN 1.8bn higher than in 2012. Spending is planned at BGN 31.7bn, equal to 38.9% of GDP and also by BGN 1.8bn higher than in 2012. The draft budget for 2013 poses risk for larger macroeconomic imbalances, the opposition and experts alert. It envisages higher spending, pensions and minimum wages - a move that is prone to criticism especially as 2013 is an election year. The government however projects also higher revenues, which are expected to come from hike in minimum thresholds for social security contributions, introduction of tax on deposits - measures that will arguably have restrictive effect on the economy and business.

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