RIGA - Saeima Speaker Daiga Mierina (Greens/Farmers) received Latvia's 2024 draft budget from Finance Minister Arvils Aseradens (New Unity) on Friday.
The traditional presentation of the budget portfolio was also attended by Janis Reirs (New Unity), Chairman of the Saeima Budget and Finance (Taxation) Committee, and representatives of the Finance Ministry.
As he handed the budget portfolio to Mierina, the finance minister described the "security and sustainability budget" drafted by Prime Minister Evika Silina's (New Unity) government as "very good".
The finance minister said that the "government has kept its word", allocating funding also for national security, which is a fundamental priority, as well as sustainable growth in healthcare and education.
The Saeima speaker said that the parliament will review the budget bills as quickly as possible and decide on forwarding them to committees on November 9. Mierina promised that unlike previously, this time lawmakers will not be working overnight to agree on the budget bills.
Mierina indicated that it is already clear that MPs have their own proposals for next year's budget.
As reported, the government on Wednesday supported the 2024 state budget and the budget framework for 2024-2026, with the consolidated budget revenues projected at EUR 14.486 billion and expenditures at EUR 16.212 billion.
The general government budget's revenue next year is projected at EUR 17.8 billion and expenditure at EUR 19.1 billion. The general government budget deficit in 2024 is therefore planned at EUR 1.3 billion, or 2.8 percent of gross domestic product.
The budget deficit in 2025 is projected at 2.3 percent of GDP and in 2026 at 0.9 percent of GDP.
Government debt next year is projected at EUR 18.6 billion, or 41 percent of GDP.
The three main budget priorities next year include internal and external security, education, and healthcare.