Central bank boss sniffy about budget

Bank of Latvia Governor Ilmars Rimsevics has given a mediocre grade to Latvia's 2016 budget which the parliament passed earlier this week.

"A lot has been said about this budget lately. In my opinion, it no longer can be graded with "eight" [out of ten]. [It] can be given a good, fat six, but no more,"  Rimsevics said in an interview with public television Friday.

Explaining his rather critical opinion about next year's budget, the head of the Latvian central bank said taxes have been changed again, Latvia was still living beyond its means and its external debt was expanding.

"Also, the budget has not been balanced and not all expenditure items that Latvia has been accumulating since 1995 have been revised," the Bank of Latvia governor said.

The Latvian parliament at an extraordinary meeting on Monday, Nov. 30, adopted the national budget for 2016 and the medium-term budget framework for 2016-18 in the final reading.

The 100-member parliament adopted the next year’s budget with 61 votes for and 34 votes against.

Revenues to the Latvian central government consolidated  budget in 2016 are planned at 7.4 billion euros and expenditure at 7.7 billion euros, with a  budget deficit at one percent of GDP.

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