Coalition has different opinions on budget amendment priorities

  • 2012-07-06

Solvita Aboltina. Photo: Saeima.

RIGA - The ruling coalition currently has different opinions regarding this year's budget amendment priorities, emphasizing the necessity to support specific areas, but not wanting the amendments to affect budget spending in the next few years.

Unity leader and Saeima Speaker Solvita Aboltina (pictured) told LETA that it is necessary to prevent past practices, "when as soon as we had any extra funds, we began distributing them forgetting about achieving a balance," pointed out the Saeima speaker and added that Latvia's priorities are clearly stated in the National Development Plan.

Meanwhile, All for Latvia!-For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK (VL-TB/LNNK) Saeima Group Chairman Einars Cilinskis pointed out that the allocation of funds must be balanced. There should not be a situation when requests from one area are fully satisfied, while other areas receive nothing. VL-TB/LNNK would like more funds to be allotted for demographic measures and culture, which previously experienced funding cuts, explained the politician.

Reform Party's Saeima Group Deputy Chairman Vjaceslavs Dombrovskis and independent Saeima member Elina Silina told LETA that they would rather support one-off expenditures, but object to those that would automatically increase spending during the next few years.

As reported, even though the amount of additional financing from this year's budget has not been set, it is clear that budget requests from ministries are much more than can realistically be allocated, Dombrovskis told members of the press after Tuesday's Cabinet meeting.

"The amount of additional financing from this year's budget has not been set yet, but could be approximately 60 to 89 million lats. It is clear that recent budget requests from various ministries cannot be realistically met," the prime minister said.

The Finance Ministry previously informed that the proposed budget amendments will be small, as the country's budget deficit cannot exceed 2.1 percent of GDP.

After several years of cost reductions during the economic crisis, this will be the first time that the budget will be amended to increase spending, instead of reducing spending.