Slovakia needs additional EUR 200mn to meet budget deficit target.

By bne IntelliNews May 18, 2012
Slovakia will need an additional EUR 200mn in reduced expenditures or increased revenues to meet its target of a budget deficit of 4.6% of GDP, TASR news agency reported, quoting Finance Minister Peter Kazimir. He said that the ministrys estimate for this years budget points at a gap of 4.9%-5% of the GDP, which is higher than the initial plan mainly due to the salary increases in the healthcare sector and the situation in the railway companies. The minister hopes not to be forced to cut state expenses, but said he is prepared for the move if necessary. Slovakias new leftist government, elected in March, has vowed to stick to the budget shortfall target set by the previous cabinet and to cut the deficit to fit in the 3% Maastricht criterion in 2013. Consolidation measures include scrapping a 19% business-friendly flat tax and introducing a progressive taxation system that should hike taxes on the above-standard income of individuals and corporations.

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