TALLINN – Members of the finance committee of the Estonian parliament gave an overview of the country's financial situation to a delegation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) via video bridge on Thursday.
The members of the finance committee met with the IMF delegation, which is on a virtual visit to Estonia from April 26 to May 14, via video bridge and gave the delegation an overview of Estonia's financial situation, Riigikogu spokespeople said. The head of the IMF delegation is Cheikh Anta Gueye.
The visit takes place within the framework of the IMF's annual consultation with Estonia. The meetings this time focused on the socio-economic impact of the coronavirus crisis and the possibilities for mitigating it, as well as the longer-term view of the economy and fiscal policy.
At the request of the IMF delegation, the members of the finance committee, headed by chairman Erki Savisaar, gave an overview of bringing the state budget to a structural balance and expectations for next year's state budget.
The IMF was informed that the reduction of the structural deficit of the state budget is planned for all years of the budget strategy. The structural deficit in 2022 will improve by two percentage points to 3.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), and in the following years the structural deficit will also decrease by at least 0.5 percent of GDP per year required by fiscal rules. Compared to the economic forecast by the Ministry of Finance, the structural deficit is decreasing faster than expected. In deciding on the budget strategy, the government followed its priorities -- rapid exit from the COVID-19 pandemic, the green transition and digital leap, supporting people's mental and physical health, financial sustainability, education and innovation, foreign policy activity, national defense, reducing regional disparities.
The meeting was also attended by members of the finance committee Aivar Soerd and Riina Sikkut.
The IMF delegation will also meet with the heads and analysts of the government, the Bank of Estonia, ministries and the Financial Supervision Authority (FSA). Meetings are also scheduled with representatives of other authorities, commercial banks, professional associations and private companies.
The International Monetary Fund discusses relevant economic policy issues with its member countries once a year. The consultation is followed by a report of the IMF's economic policy assessment for Estonia.