By Adnan Prekic – Podgorica
The Montenegrin government adopted the draft law for next year’s budget. After a technical correction, reducing discretionary spending, the montenegrin budget for 2015 amounted to almost EUR 1.85 billion. An increase deficit occurred, due to the money designated for the construction of the highway. The budget of Montenegro in 2015 will be overdrawn by 6.65 percent. In spite of the insistence of employees in the public sector for an increase in their earnings, no funds have been committed for that purpose.
The revenues of the Montenegrin budget for 2015 amount to EUR 1.33 billion and the expenditures to EUR 1.56 billion. The budget deficit without the expenditures for the construction of the highway, amounted to EUR 29.7 million. With the money that was planned to begin construction of the highway deficit amounted to EUR 235.7 million, or 6.65 percent of the total budget.
In the coming year the Montenegrin government plans a debiting of EUR 633 million. The largest part of the debt will be spent on refinancing old debt obligations arising from earlier periods. The draft law of next year’s budget anticipates a capital budget of EUR 284 million. From that money, 206 million will be allocated to finance the priority sections of the highway. The remainder of the capital budget will be allocated to the continuation of initiated projects from previous years.
In the government they are expecting that despite of the new loans, the public debt in the coming period will be smaller. Montenegro’s public debt is approaching the maximum limit of indebtedness under the Maastricht criteria of 60% of the GDP. The government explained that the debt will be lowered by favoring the development components or increasing the level of gross domestic product.
The Minister of Finance Radoje Zugic (photo) said that the priorities of the budget for the coming year are retention growth in current expenditures and a basic level of earnings at the level of last year. Among the priorities are also the thawing of pensions and their possible increase. The government was expected to announce next year’s budget last week, but the adoption was postponed because of technical drafting and adjustments on the expenditure side, which imply a reduction in discreet costs.