5th July 2024, Skopje – As per the 2024 Budget, there is no room to reduce the expenditures since under the Supplementary Budget, funds will be reallocated from the budget positions generating no effects. Initial analyses demonstrated that cuts could be made on the expenditures, ranging between EUR 200 and EUR 300 million, however, clearer picture will be provided in the next days since the Ministry of Finance has been already communicated by the budget users.

This was pointed out by Minister of Finance, Gordana Dimitrieska-Kochoska in her guest appearance in “Win Win” TV Show on Telma TV Channel, thereby pointing out that with respect to the Supplementary Budget, intensive activities will be carried out during the Weekend, after which more accurate information will follow.

“Given that the initial analyses show no room for reducing the expenditures since unforeseen expenditures have been incurred, funds will have to be reallocated. Our aim is not to change the total revenues and expenditures in absolute terms. Thus, the budget deficit will not record any change in absolute terms, however, its percentage will be higher. What is causing a concern is the public debt, accounting for 61.2% of GDP, with projected GDP growth of 3.4%, whereby as per the recent available data, this GDP increase is projected to range between 2.1% and 2.5%, Minister of Finance said.

She stressed that instructions will be given for presenting the data as realistically as possible. “We would like to prevent any further unrealistic projections and planning, thus, being familiar with the current state of affairs and the figures we have at our disposal, is a good start. Only then, we could focus on making improvements”. She went on that there is room to make cuts from the travel expenses, promotion expenses, as well as projects without completion.

Dimitrieska – Kochoska underlined that the funds, which need to be provided in the Budget for repaying the pensions including the announced increase thereof, will not exert any pressure on the expenditures. Greater pressure is placed by the interest-related payments. According to the Minister, actions as regards the Budget revenues should be considered in view of estimating the extent of the informal economy. Introduction of e-invoice, which is relevant for the VAT refund measure, will significantly contribute thereto. Continuous correlation and communication between the Public Revenue Office and the Customs Administration, as well as cost-effective and accountable behavior by the heads therein is indispensable.

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