The Slovenia Times

No Place for Old Propsals


The majority of the MPs argued that the new government should regulate the two fields on its own.

Wednesday's session of the Finance and Monetary Committee saw the MPs the incoming government coalition supporting the view that the changes to the public finances are poorly crafted.

The original proposal capped public debt at 48% of GDP and state guarantees at 20% of GDP, but the government changed it by setting a debt ceiling of 60% with the introduction of safety measures when debt reaches 40% of GDP.

Mihael Prevc of the coalition People's Party (SLS) said today that caps on public debt and state guarantees would be introduced at the constitutional level, as recently agreed by the parliamentary parties.

He added that the vision of his party was even more far-reaching, as it would promote solutions which would demand creation of reserves and reduction of debt in times of high economic activity.

Matevž Frangež of the Social Democrats (SD), the biggest party of the outgoing government, on the other hand said that the changes to the public finances act would create rules for an adequate fiscal discipline.

"Since the proposed solutions will not be passed in time, we may face certain consequences, perhaps even with further downgrades of credit ratings," he added.

His party colleague Janko Veber said that changing the Constitution might take a year or even longer, warning that "we will lose the very precious time and worsen the situation of the economy and the state."

Andrej Šircelj of the coalition Democrats (SDS) said that "the new coalition is not dodging responsibility", announcing that the stability of public finances would be based on a balanced budget and strict restrictions in terms of borrowing.

The development planning bill meanwhile aimed at introducing a systematic approach to national planning, joining individual development policies, coordinating the drafting of development documents and providing the legislative framework for a performance-based budget.

However, Ivan Vogrin of the Virant List believes that the incoming government should deal with the planning of the budget. Ivan Hršak of the Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) agreed, adding that the new government should be given the opportunity to set up a development planning strategy of its own.

Matjaž Han (SD) regretted the lack of support for the bill, saying that it would serve as a good basis for the drafting of a supplementary budget for 2012.


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