23th July 2019, Skopje – Employment will continue to grow, while average net wage is expected to increase by around 5%, according to Ministry of Finance projections. Deputy Minister of Finance, Shiret Elezi, elaborating on the 2018 Annual Budget Report at the Parliament, said that favourable economic trends last year continued with a stronger intensity this year, hence, better economic performance is expected.
Elezi said that gross domestic product in 2018 experienced intensified growth of 2.7%, which was very close to MoF projections of 2.8%.
-For comparison purposes, autumn forecasts of other relevant institutions were between 1.6% and 2.5%. This clearly speaks of the strengthened capacity and commitment of the Ministry of Finance. Credibility of economic forecasts is key to credible budget designing, thus to credible conducting of the fiscal policy, Elezi pointed out.
Deputy Minister underlined that economic growth in 2018 was a result of increased consumption and positive contribution of net export to economic growth. She also pointed out that number of employees in 2018 surged by 18,400 persons compared to 2017.
As regards 2018 Budget execution, Deputy Minister said that revenue collection was according to the projections, while expenditures were executed on regular basis and in a timely manner.
-Total budget revenues were collected in the amount of Denar 188.5 billion, and they were intended for financing the expenditures executed in the amount of Denar 200.1 billion.
Realization of revenues and expenditures resulted in Budget deficit in the amount of Denar 11.5 billion, whereby it was lower in relation to the projections by Denar 6.5 billion, accounting for 1.8% of GDP, Elezi said.
She said that budget deficit financing and regular servicing of liabilities on the basis of domestic and foreign debt in 2018 was ensured through the Eurobond and the favourable loans and credit lines intended for financing certain projects, as well as government securities. Liabilities on the basis of principal in the amount of Denar 28.12 billion and interest payments in the amount of Denar 7.699 billion, among which the 2013 PBG 2 loan with the World Bank in the amount of EUR 95 million, were also repaid.