10-Billionaire Budget with 3% Growth and 3% Deficit
The 2016 state budget bill has become a subject of active discussions. The bill determines indicators for revenues and expenditures for the next year. Various representatives of the Authorities have made multiple statements that the 2016 budget bill is oriented on social programs.
The year of 2015 has brought various political unrests in the Region. Therefore, the Georgian Authorities had to revise the next year’s economic parameters and forecast indicators several times. However, the final edition demonstrates that the GDP real growth forecast is 3% for 2016, while the GDP deflator is 4.5%. In the midterm period, the economy real growth forecast is around 5.5%. The budget deficit volume also represents one of the important indicators of the macroeconomic parameters. For 2016, this indicator is planned at 3% in relation to GDP.
The state budget expenditures are planned at 9.920 billion GEL, including: budget amount constitutes 9.110 billion GEL, grants – 130 million GEL, and credits – 680 million GEL. Total amount of the state budget expenditures accounts for 8 373.2 million GEL, including: payroll fund – 1 438.7 million GEL, expenditures on goods and services – 1 008.1 million GEL, interest rates – 477.1 million GEL, subsidies – 247.1 million GEL and all other expenditures – 1 275.4 million GEL.
The state budget allocations to the ministries and state-funded offices are as follows:
The Ministry of Health and Social Protection
The funds allocated to various ministries prove that the 2016 budget bill makes considerable accent on the healthcare direction. The major portion of budget funds is allocated to the Health Ministry (3.070 billion GEL), including the social protection and pension programs will be financed by 2 183.0 thousand GEL, the healthcare protection programs will be financed by 799.5 million GEL and allocations for medical facilities rehabilitation and equipment are 32 million GEL.
The Ministry of Education and Science
The 2016 budget bill also gives priority to the education sector. The Ministry of Education and Science ranks second in terms of budget allocations of 975.2 million GEL, including: general education allocations – 572.9 million GEL. The 2016 state budget also calls for increasing salaries to teachers. In September 2015 the basis salaries for teachers increased by 50 GEL to 355 GEL, while in April 2016 the salaries will increase to 405 GEL. Budget allocations for stimulating the vocational education makes up 36 million GEL and higher education and scientific programs will be financed by 174 million GEL. The education facilities infrastructure development will be financed by 94.4 million GEL.
The Ministry of Agriculture
The budget bill calls for allocating 281.4 million GEL to the Agriculture Ministry, including melioration and irrigation systems development will be financed by 64 million GEL, preferential agro credits will be financed by 50 million GEL, vintage support programs will be financed by 25 million GEL, financial liabilities for purchasing or leasing agricultural machines will be financed by 23 million GEL, agriculture cooperatives support programs will be financed by more than 7 million GEL, and agro insurance measures will be financed by 10 million GEL.
The Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure
The 2016 state budget will finance infrastructural projects by 950 million GEL. Namely, road infrastructure improvement will be financed by 526.6 million GEL, regional and municipal infrastructure rehabilitation will be financed by 246.2 million GEL and water supply infrastructure restoration-rehabilitation works will be financed by 170.6 million GEL.
The Ministry of Defense will receive 670 million GEL, the Interior Ministry – 595 million GEL, the State Security Service – 95 million GEL, the Ministry of Corrections – 153 million GEL, the Ministry of Energy – 135 million GEL (including gasification programs will be financed by 20 million GEL),
The Ministry of Economy – 85 million GEL (including Produce in Georgia program will be financed by 20 million GEL);
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs – 100 million GEL;
The Ministry of Culture and Monuments Protection – 95 million GEL;
The Ministry of Justice – 86.5 million GEL;
The Ministry of Refugees and Accommodation – 70 million GEL;
The Ministry of Sports and Youth – 75 million GEL;
The Ministry of Environment Protection and Natural Resources – 40.7 million GEL;
The Ministry of Finances – 90 million GEL.
The 2016 state budget also makes focus on regional development programs through financing regional projects and agribusiness support programs by 280 million GEL. Moreover, the state budget will also allocate 20 million GEL to the Five Highland Settlements Development Foundation as part of the Georgian law on Highland Regions Development. Moreover, the government’s reserve fund will be financed by 50 million GEL and the President’s reserve fund will be replenished by 5 million GEL.