28th July 2021, Skopje – Under the 2021 Supplementary Budget, adopted by the Parliament of the Republic of North Macedonia on Wednesday, more budget revenues are projected, as well as more funds are provided for capital expenditures, the measures aimed at supporting the business sector and the citizens as a response to the COVID-19 crisis, the health sector, agriculture, regular payment of pensions and wages and social safety net expenditures.
As per the modifications and amendments to the 2021 Budget, total revenues are projected at Denar 222.5 billion, being by around Denar 10 billion or by 4.7% higher in relation to the initial Budget projections. Total expenditures are projected at Denar 268.8 billion, being by 8.6% (around Denar 21.1 billion) higher in relation to the projections. Projected revenues and expenditures imply a deficit in the amount of Denar 46.2 billion, i.e. 6.5%% of GDP.
– 2021 Supplementary Budget reflects the economic developments, proper use of public funds to the end of achieving the set targets, as well as dedication to coping with the pandemic – Minister of Finance, Fatmir Besimi, said when elaborating on the 2021 Supplementary Budget, adding that fiscal stimulus for the business sector and the citizens continues until full recovery and getting the economy back to the economic growth trajectory.
Pointing out that citizens’ health, sound economy and sound finances remain to be priority, the Minister underlined that commitment to investing in durable consumer goods remains, focusing on implementation of capital infrastructure projects in road and railway infrastructure, energy and utilities infrastructure, as well as capital investments geared towards improving the conditions in the health, education and social sectors, agriculture and environment protection.
Additional Denar 3 billion is allocated for the agriculture sector, Denar 685 million for environment protection under the new Green Development Program, additional Denar 416 million is allocated for the social sector for payment of child care allowance and social safety net expenditures, Denar 200 million for students’ meals, as well as Denar 800 million for VAT refund.
Under the modifications and amendments, additional funds are provided for the health sector, insulin for insulin-dependent patients, procurement of vaccines through the COVAX system, procurement of transport vehicles and refrigerators for storing the vaccines and funds for equipping the vaccination sites, as well as procurement of equipment for testing the crude oil quality aimed at ensuring clean environment. More funds are also allocated for tourism support by using tourism vouchers, as well as for rehabilitating the Studenchishko Blato, placing protection fence at Otinja River, construction of part of the water supply installation in Studenichani settlement, construction of water reservoir, pump and well for potable water supply in a settlement in the village of Strmnica, Zhelino Municipality, and for the agriculture sector, in particular for the small family-owned wineries.
Capital expenditures are projected at around Denar 30 billion or by Denar 5.7 billion more compared to the 2021 projections. Under the modifications and amendments to the 2021 Supplementary Budget, expenditures are redesigned, including higher share of capital expenditures in the total expenditures, whereby increased capital expenditures by 24% is a result of providing the necessary funds for implementation of part of the Government measures, such as Denar 615 million for interest-free credits for the most affected sectors through the Development Bank, Denar 300 million for the credit guarantee scheme through the Development Bank, Denar 610 million for establishment of Fund for Support to Export-Oriented Companies through the Development Bank, Denar 500 million capital expenditures for rural development (IPARD), Denar 90 million for investments in sports facilities, Denar 60 million for social housing settlement in Strumica and Denar 120 million for Slovenechka intersection, Denar 55 million for kindergartens and social centers, Denar 123 million for reconstruction of public health institutions, …
– Fiscal policy is to be always matching the real needs, supporting the economic growth and development, job creation and better living standard for the citizens. Therefore, main goals of the 2021 Budget are strengthening the financing of the healthcare system and preserving the health and the life of citizens, supporting the economic stabilization and laying the foundations for solid economic recovery and accelerated growth, uninterrupted financing of the basic functions of the state and supporting the judiciary reforms, as well as the EU integration process, the Minister underlined.
Economy is expected to recover this year, with growth projected at 4.1%. Investments will play a crucial role in the economic recovery and its gradual intensification. Gross investments are projected to experience real growth of 8% in 2021, with both private and public investment expected to contribute positively. Consumption is projected to pick up by 4% real terms, with growth of public consumption projected at 4.3%. Export is projected to surge by 10.6% and import to increase by 11% in real terms. Number of employed is projected to increase by 1%, which will contribute for the average employment rate to increase to 47.5% and bring the unemployment rate down to 15.8%.
Budget of the Republic of North Macedonia is fully created to the end of achieving the strategic priorities, accelerating the economic growth, the priority as regards the EU integration process and the obligations deriving from the NATO membership.
The Budget is liquid. Revenue performance is excellent, being one of the basis of the Supplementary Budgets, while expenditures are executed on regular basis and in a timely manner within the projections and the expectations. Since the beginning of the year, revenues registered increase of 15.6% compared to the same period last year.