According to the newly adopted budget, slightly more than 1.516 billion dinars should be poured into the state treasury next year. The costs will exceed them by at least 200 billion dinars. Most of the income, as always, will come from taxes.
Two decades earlier, the state was looking to “package” costs in as much as eight and a half times less funds. At that time, revenues reached 177.5 billion dinars. Budget growth is influenced by higher economic activity, economic growth, smaller gray economy, but also inflation.
Experts explain that it is difficult and ungrateful to compare the nominal amounts of today’s and the budget from two decades ago. In 2002, according to the World Bank, goods and services worth $ 17.2 billion were created in Serbia.
The euro was printed at the beginning of 2002 and at the end of the year it exceeded the dollar, so our GDP in the European currency was somewhat lower. Last year, it reached 46.7 billion euros. And the newly adopted state treasury plan for 2022 should amount to a record 52.4 billion euros. And this relationship, however, experts explain, is not entirely realistic. It is influenced by the exchange rate policy – whether the dinar was overestimated and when it was underestimated.
– Higher revenues are a consequence of higher economic activity. The value of what is produced is higher. The number of transactions is also higher, and they are more valuable – explains economist Ivan Nikolić. – A tax is paid on them, which is also higher. And employment is much higher than it used to be. And that is a consequence of greater activity. The coverage on which taxes are paid is also higher. The gray economy is incomparably smaller. Higher revenues are thus a consequence of better coverage of goods and services on which duties are paid. But inflation in that period and cumulative GDP growth should be taken into account. There are many factors that affect the growth of budget revenues and it is impossible to isolate several of them.
Two decades ago, the unemployment rate was 15.2 percent. Today, according to the latest data – 11.1 percent. Already in 2003, budget revenues were 100 billion dinars higher, although unemployment was 18.5 percent.
Over the next two years, more than 300 billion dinars were poured into the coffers, and in 2006 and 2007, more than 500 billion dinars. From 2009 to 2011, the inflow was higher than 700 billion dinars, the next three higher than 800 billion dinars. Four years ago, in 2017, revenues exceeded 1,000 billion dinars.
Revenues, however, were never enough to cover all state expenses. From 2009 to 2011, the deficit was higher than four percent of GDP, and then higher than six percent. The pandemic put the most pressure on public finances, so the deficit reached 8% of GDP last year.
EXCISE DUTIES are one of the items that is far more generous today than it used to be. Two decades ago, 36.7 billion dinars were poured from them, and we expect them to bring us 337.6 billion dinars next year. Income tax was planned at the level of 45 billion dinars in 2002, and today – 87.7 billion dinars.
AND SUBSIDIES MORE GENEROUS
Two decades ago, the REPUBLIC budget allocated 42 billion dinars for employees. Next year, this item will take 363.6 billion dinars. The repayment of interest then cost nine billion dinars, while the costs of borrowing next year will cost us 116 billion dinars. The budget is wider in terms of subsidies. In the past, 41.5 billion dinars were spent on them, and in 2022, 143.6 billion dinars are planned.
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