site.btaParliament Adopts Conclusively Revised Budget
Following two days of debates, Parliament adopted conclusively the national budget revision for 2022. The revenue side was increased to BGN 34,112,529,300 which is 760 million more than what the government had proposed. The expenditure side has BGN 21,171,354,700 against 20,411,354,700 in the initial proposal. The budget remains balanced.
The government debt's ceiling is increased from BGN 7.3 billion to BGN 10.3 billion.
Outgoing Finance Minister Assen Vassilev thanked the Finance Ministry and the MPs that "in a difficult situation they managed to finish what was most important for the Bulgarians".
Chairman of the parliamentary Budget and Finance Committee Lyubomir Karimansky thanked for the work of the MPs on the committee.
Compensations for Businesses for High Electricity Prices
In the budget update Parliament voted compensations for the business for the high prices of electricity. The motion was passed unanimously after earlier in the week the Budget and Finance Committee voted down all proposals for such compensations.
The provisions voted on Thursday envisage that the Electricity System Security Fund compensate non-household end consumers of power to the amount of 100% of the difference between the actual average monthly price of electricity from the day ahead power exchange and a baseline price of 250 lv/MWh, in the period from July 1, 2022 to December 31, 2022. No compensations will be paid to consumers with prices below the 250 leva/MWh baseline price.
Higher Tax Reliefs to Parents
Parliament also increased the tax reliefs for parents, increasing by 1,500 leva to 6,000 leva the amount deducted from the annual tax bases of a parent of one child who has not reached legal age; by 3,000 leva to 9,000 leva for two children, and by 4,500 leva to 18,000 leva for three and more kids. Also, the amount is increased by 3,000 leva yo 12,000 leva for raising a disabled child. The measure will cost 230 million leva for 2022.
The revised budget will also provide BGN 173 million for a 20% raise of Interior Ministry staff salaries as of July 1, as well as BGN 150 million for salaries in education and upkeep of kindergartens.
Also, a total of BGN 20 million will be used to increase subsidies for education costs at state universities and an additional BGN 1,400,000 were approved for libraries and stage arts.
The revised budget includes BGN 30,000,000 for raising municipal administration salaries and BGN 100,000,000 for municipal capital expenditures.
The sum of BGN 26,000,000 is designed to cover six-month bonuses of employees of the Social Assistance Agency, the Employment Agency and the Chief Labour Inspectorate in connection with work in hazardous conditions and overtime to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.
Parliament also approved the sum of BGN 1,180,000 for raising remunerations of National Assembly staff, at the expense of savings.
Financial support for public transport is set at BGN 110,000,000, including BGN 74,000,000 for Sofia’s urban transport, BGN 16,500,000 – for other municipalities, and BGN 20,000,000 – for inter-settlement routes.
Within the current budget, the National Assembly also authorized the Council of Ministers to approve state guarantees as follows: for new loan agreements of Bulgargaz in the amount of EUR 150 million in keeping with state aid legislation; for new loan agreements of Bulgartransgaz in the amount of EUR 382 million in keeping with state aid legislation. The new state guarantees may not exceed BGN 1,800,100,000.
Parliament obligated the Government to take action to raise the capital of Fond FLAG EAD, Sofia 100% state-owned company within the system of the Ministry of regional Development and Public Works by a cash contribution of BGN 50,000,000 in new shares.
A similar step to raise the capital was taken for Bulgarian Posts to the sum of BGN 45 million.