10th October 2023, Skopje – Fiscal Council, i.e. the independent body that will oversee macroeconomic and fiscal policies in the country, becomes operational. Establishment of the Fiscal Council is aimed at strengthening the system, being part of the broader reform in support of sound and sustainable macroeconomic policies, Minister of Finance, Fatmir Besimi pointed out today, when meeting the Council members, upon holding the constitutive session, whereat the principles and the instructions as regards the actions and the scope of work of this body, were determined, whereby the University Professor, Gligor Bishev, was appointed as President.
Establishment of this Fiscal Council is foreseen under the reform Organic Budget Law, comprising independent members proposed by the National Bank, MASA and the State Audit Office, elected by the Parliament of the Republic of North Macedonia. Members thereof comprise: Academician Abdulmenaf Bejeti, proposed by MASA, Marina Trpeska, full-time professor at the Faculty of Economics of UKIM, proposed by the State Audit Office and Gligor Bishev, proposed by the National Bank. Meeting held in MoF was also attended by Deputy Minister of Finance, Filip Nikoloski and the State Secretary in MoF, Jelena Tast.
Need for cooperation and exchange of materials and information and sharing documents was confirmed at this meeting, in support of the Fiscal Council’s commissioning and acting. Thus, meeting will be soon held, the objective of which is preparing the 2024 Budget.
“Fiscal Council is part of the major public finance reform, with this independent body supervising the meeting of the targets, assessing the macroeconomic setup and the policies, which are implemented. At the same time, the Fiscal Council is also a significant segment in putting a new and improved public finance system in place, while the reforms also stipulate fiscal rules, an integrated public finance system, measuring the performance, as well as number of other reforms that will provide for strengthened structure and contribute to fiscal sustainability”, Minister of Finance Besimi, points out, thereby adding that the role of the Fiscal Council is providing a comprehensive fiscal risk assessment, through information on potential threats to the country’s fiscal position and providing an integrated approach to managing such risks. Fiscal risk analysis will contribute to a better understanding of the public finances position, thus providing support for pursuing prudent fiscal policies, as well as strengthening risk management accountability.
As per the Law, the Fiscal Council will, in an independent, objective and professional manner, prepare analyzes and opinions on the macroeconomic and fiscal assumptions used for preparation of the State Budget and the Fiscal Strategy, the modifications and amendments to the State Budget, the Semi-Annual Report on the Budget Execution, the Annual Budget Report and other documentation submitted before the Parliament of the Republic of North Macedonia or published pursuant to this Law and similar.
Public finance reforms are aimed at longer-term and better planning of budget programs and budgets, sustainability and continuity in implementing the policies, more just model from the point of view of revenues, expenditures and the manner of financing, as well as monitoring and measuring the performance. Public finance reforms are required for accelerated economic growth and they are confirmed in the reports of the international financial institutions, whereby “Fitch” Agency staff stated, in its latest report that the Government continues to improve the public finance management, while also highlighting the establishment of the Fiscal Council.
Both parties stressed their determination to invest their knowledge and capacities for the purpose of fulfilling this reform agenda and attaining higher rates of growth and prosperity.