Lithuania to see billion-lita deficit

  • 2008-12-03
  • TBT Staff in cooperation with BNS
VILNIUS 's Incoming LithuanianPrime Minister Andrius Kubilius has said that he expects next year's budgetdeficit to reach 1 billion litas (290 million euros).

"We are now targeting a budget deficit of up to a billion litas,"Kubilius told reporters after meeting with his partners in the four-partyconservative-led coalition on Wednesday.

A billion litas makes up about 1 percent of the gross domestic product.

The government's program, which is yet to be approved by the parliament,does not include an exact deficit estimate for next year, he added.

The outgoing government of Gediminas Kirkilas has drawn up a draft 2009budget with a fiscal deficit of almost 3 percent of GDP. However, experts havesaid that, in real terms, the deficit would be 4 to 5 percent of GDP.

Meanwhile, leading Lithuanian-language daily Lietuvos Rytas reported thatthe country was ready to ask the International Monetary Fund for a 5.8 billionlita lifeline.

"This requires political will: we would have to take on obligations andfulfill those obligations. Until now, the IMF's recommendations could bedismissed out of hand, but that will be impossible once a credit line isobtained," Lithuanian Bank Association President Stasys Kropas said.