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Tackling the Budget Deficit

Published: November 12, 2013 | 3:41 pm
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The Finance Minister is expected to appear before the Parliament on Wednesday, when it will transpire whether or not any amendments will be made to the 2013 State Budget in the light of the failure to fulfil this year’s programme. Thus far, Nodar Khaduri has only reiterated that the Budget deficit will not be plugged by applying pressure on the businesses.
Each member of the government’s economic team has produced different arguments to explain the failure to fulfil the Budget programme. The Minister of the Economy has pointed towards a lower-than-expected GDP growth, and the review of the infrastructural project portfolio. The Tbilisi-Rustavi bypass and the new Presidential Residence are only two of the problematic projects for which new tenders had to be announced. However, the Minister of Infrastructure Davit Narmania has insisted that the infrastructural projects only form 4.5% of the GDP. Therefore, according to him, the ministry’s share of blame for the Budget deficit is minimal.
The head of the Parliamentary Committee on Budget Finance does not know how the government is planning to plug the hole in the Budget, but has advised the government both against sequester and against taking out additional loans.
Precisely how big a deficit there will be in the 2013 Budget, is currently unknown.

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