New Measures Deepen the Deficit (Budgetary Traffic Light December 2021)

  • 23. 12. 2021

Secretariat of the Council for Budget Responsibility (SoCBR) estimates General Government Budget (GGB) deficit on the level of EUR 6,8 bn

• SoCBR has significantly increased the estimate of the GGB deficit in 2021 to the level of EUR 6.775 bn. (7.0 % of GDP). The change compared to the November forecast is about EUR 282 mil. and is caused by higher expenditures on salaries and anti-epidemic measures.
• Current measures due to the worsened pandemic situation pose an additional risk to public finance developments. SoCBR also assumes that expenditure on additional compensatory measures will negatively influence the GGB deficit mainly in 2022.

• The deviation of the expected GGB deficit from the current government estimate is positive at the level of EUR 943 bn. (1.0% of GDP), which means that the risk of a deficit rising above the level expected by the government is low. The current government estimate published in the Draft Budgetary Plan for 2022-2024 assumes the deficit of 7.9% of GDP. However, the evolution of public finances is still affected by high uncertainty due to the ongoing pandemic and its implications for macroeconomic development.

• Compared to government expectations, we estimate the most significant positive impact on the general government balance in state budget expenditures. Saving of EUR 594 mil. (0.6% of GDP) is mainly due to a slower absorption of capital expenditures, as the low growth rate observed during the first eleven months does not correspond to the high level of year-end expenditures projected by the government.

• Budgetary impact of pandemic government measures in the current forecast amount to a total of EUR 3.230 bn. (3.3% of GDP). In comparison to the government’s estimate, the budgetary impact is higher by EUR 54 mil. (0.05% of GDP).