The Fiscal Council of Serbia has assessed that the 2021 package of anti-crisis measures should only target the companies and population most affected by the crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. “Serbia’s budget in 2021 is in deficit even without the announced new package of anti-crisis measures,” the statement reads.
The Fiscal Council underlined that new state aid to businesses and adult citizens of Serbia, which is not provided for in the current budget, can only be financed by a further increase in the fiscal deficit and new public debt in 2021, beyond the budgeted amount of about 1.5 billion euro.
This means that the share of public debt in the gross domestic product (GDP) during 2021 will continue to grow to more than 60%, instead of declining, and that the new debt will be paid by taxpayers with interest.
The Council warned that despite the fact that Serbia does not have a large public debt, it is not economically justifiable for all taxpayers to pay this debt in order to give money to companies that did not have any problems during the pandemic or to citizens with a high income.
Earlier, the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, has announced the set of economic measures worth 2.5 billion euro, including cash for all adult citizens as well as disbursement of minimum wages for businesses. Adult citizens will have to apply online if they want to receive 30 euro in May and the same amount in November, while pensioners will receive 50 and 60 euro.
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