Skopje, 4th January 2017 (MIA) – Despite the effects of the most complex political crisis since Republic of Macedonia gained its independence, the economy has yielded positive results anyway. Economic growth would most probably exceed government projections, while unemployment has been reduced to the historically lowest level. Minister of Finance, Kiril Minoski, said for an interview with TV Sitel.
As the Minister pointed out, despite the exceptionally difficult political situation, foreign investors continued coming in 2016 as well. As he said, even foreign direct investments grew compared to 2015.
– There are companies that announced the opening and opened plants last year, others have even commenced the construction activities. All this will contribute to creating jobs, Minoski underlined, adding that employment this year is expected to surge by 3% according to the most conservative projections.
Minoski stated that the state budget was in an excellent condition. As he said, last year ended with an excellent 99% collection of taxes and by around 1 percentage point lower deficit than the projections. Budget execution, such as payment of salaries and pensions, as well as other expenditures, will be smooth and on regular basis in 2017 as well.
– According to 2016 data, despite the series of scenarios and speculations that part of the revenues was inflated, it appeared that it was not the case. Tax revenues experienced 99% performance, which is an excellent figure, Minister of Finance pointed out.
However, he underlined, every political crisis has adverse effects on the economy.
– Various relevant credit bureaus and credit rating agencies mentioned the negative trends in some of their reports, stating the political crisis as the main adverse factor therefore. Political crisis influences above all the consumption, as well as the investment environment, hence the negative impact on the economic development. I have therefore mentioned on several occasions that it is necessary for the political crisis to be appropriately resolved as soon as possible and to focus on the main priority of the state, that being the economic development, job creation and higher living standard of the citizens, Minister Minoski pointed out in the interview.
He is an optimist as regards 2017, expecting sound economic growth, as a result of the investments and the effects from the economic policies being implemented.