State budget outline for 2000 forcasts 2% fiscal deficit

The state budget outline for the year 2000 was debated by cabinet and Slovakia's main unions last week. The budget deficit should not exceed 18 billion Slovak crowns, or 2% of GDP. The total deficit of the budgets of all government bodies should remain below 3% of GDP, or 28 billion crowns. State-issued guarantees on corporate loans represent one of the biggest risks for meeting these goals.

The 2000 state budget projects revenues at 190.3 billion crowns, but this figure does not include contributions by the National Bank of Slovakia (NBS) or funds from the European Union. Planned expenditures are at 208.3 billion crowns.

Cabinet has two alternatives for economic development. The first is based on one-percent GDP growth, a 17-18% unemployment rate, and average inflation between 9-11%. The second variant counts on 2% GDP growth, 16% unemployment, and 10% inflation.

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