The Government at yesterday’s session approved the draft budget for 2017 and later today, it is expected to be submitted to Parliament.

The Minister of Finance Kiril Minoski explained that the budget for 2017 has been prepared on the basis of a projection for economic growth of 3% next year.

“Total revenue of the consolidated budget for 2017 has been planned to reach 187.6 billion denars, which is 7.6% more than in 2016. In total, tax revenues are expected to increase by 9.5% compared to 2016. Total expenditures are projected at 206.22 billion denars, or 4.5% more than this year”, said Minoski.

26.77 billion denars have been allocated for salaries, while 92.7 billion denars for social benefits. Next year, 51.2 billion denars have been allocated for the payment of pensions and included in that sum, is the increase of 5% in the pensions, which will start in November 2016.

“These projected revenues and expenditures provide a consolidation of public finances in stages, i.e. reducing the budget deficit to 3% of gross domestic product (GDP), or, the total sum, 18.6 billion denars”, said Minoski.

Export is estimated to increase by 6% and imports, according to government estimates, will increase by 4.7%. Gross investments are expected to achieve real growth of 4.5%.

Capital investments are planned in the amount of 26.95 billion denars.