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Government submits 2015 budget bill to lawmakers

Telco

The Hungarian government submitted the 2015 budget bill to Parliament today, one day earlier than the legal deadline. The bill calls for central government revenue of HUF 16.3 trillion and expenditures of HUF 17.2 trillion, which would result in an expected deficit of HUF 877.6 bln, according to Hungarian news agency MTI. It also reportedly counts on HUF 25 billion from the controversial internet tax.

The bill foresees a 2.4%-of-GDP general government deficit, calculated according to EU methodology, lower than the 2.9% target for this year. It also targets a 0.9% reduction of state debt as a percentage of GDP to 75.4%, excluding exchange rate changes, MTI reports.

The bill banks on annual GDP growth of 2.5% and the assumption that household consumption would climb by 2.6%. The bill also banks on a hefty 1.3% increase in employment, 1.8% average annual inflation and an external financing capacity equivalent to 8.4% of GDP, MTI said.

The bill would set aside HUF 60 bln, up from HUF 40 bln, in the National Protection Fund, which is a surplus to be used in case of economic emergencies. The bill also includes HUF 100 bln in general reserves. The allocation for local councils is set at HUF 2,500 bln in the bill, including HUF 690 bln from the central budget, according to MTI.

Economics Minister Mihály Varga reportedly said that sectoral taxes, such as those on advertisers and banks, would remain in place in 2015.

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