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Cabinet passes 2008-2010 budget draft

The cabinet passed a draft proposal for the 2008-10 budget, with some reservations, on May 9. The approval had already been postponed twice before.

According to the proposal, the budget deficit will be 0.1 percentage points lower than the finance ministry forecast in 2006. The proposed deficit for 2008 will be 2.34 percent of GDP, falling to 1.84 percent in 2009, and 0.84 percent in 2010.

The final version of the budget proposal should be submitted by August 15, 2007. According to a preliminary estimate using the ESA 95 mechanism, Slovakia's budget deficit reached Sk55.4 billion (€1.7 billion) in 2006, which represented 3.4 percent of GDP.

This figure included the costs involved in introducing the second (capitalisation) pillar of the pension system, which came to Sk18.2 billion, or 1.1 percent of GDP.

The budget draft is based on the finance ministry's current macro-economic prognosis for the period to 2010, which predicts average economic growth of 6.3 percent, inflation of 1.9 to 2.4 percent, and an unemployment rate of below 10 percent.

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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