Unless substantive measures are adopted, Slovakia’s public-finance deficit will climb to 7.4 percent of GDP this year, according to a survey of members of the Club of Economic Analysts (KEA) released on Wednesday, June 2.
The government's official target for 2010 is to cut the deficit to 5.5 percent of GDP, from its 6.8-percent level in 2009. "Most members believe that [current] measures in the area of expenditures won't be enough to ensure a sustainable cut in the deficit, and that a reform of tax and contributions aimed at increasing their collection will also be needed," said club head Ján Tóth, the TASR newswire reported.
All 13 KEA members who took part in the survey also expressed reservations about the way in which the public-finance deficit is calculated. According to them, the official method of reckoning doesn't fully reflect the burden placed on the public finances in areas such as public-private partnership (PPP) projects or aid to state-run enterprises. Despite the fact that Slovakia has a lower public debt than many other countries, its credit risk is rated as average within the EU. According to the survey, the likelihood of Slovakia's ending up like Greece by 2011, plagued with difficulties in financing the country's debt, is estimated at 26 percent.
KEA is a civil association with 33 members, including economic analysts of commercial banks, NGOs, the Slovak Academy of Sciences, ministries, consulting firms and universities.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
3. Jun 2010 at 10:00