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According to the draft budget for 2013 made public by the Ministry of Finance, the most significant funding increases compared to 2012 are in the Health and Transportation sectors, by 80 pc and 40 pc respectively. At the opposite end, Culture, Justice and the Interior will receive less money. The government will adopt the budget for 2013 today and send it in Parliament on Thursday. Premier Victor Ponta said yesterday, during a special meeting on the budget, that he did not increase the budgets of institutions, as revealed by public debates, and most budget allowances have been kept unchanged or reduced. He asked ministers to publicly explain the figures of the budget and have a transparent attitude. The premier added that the institutions whose budget increased in 2013 against last year received money in order to restore salaries and allot more funds for goods and services, if maintenance costs went up.Thus, Gov’t approved yesterday the tax package, through which are introduced new taxes on companies and expand agricultural taxation for individuals, new amendments to the Tax Code, the minimum wage increase and indexation of pensions, official sources said.The budget of the Health sector was set at RON 8.75 bln, accounting for 4.4 pc of the GDP, 80.9 pc higher than in 2012. The ministry of Transport has a budget of RON 7.3 bln, up 40.7 pc. The next highest increases are for the Ministry of Finance, by 17.8 pc, which will give the ministry RON 2.8 bln, and the Ministry of National Defence with an increase of 14.6 pc and a budget for 2013 of RON 5.6 bln.Another ministry that will receive more funding is Education, whose budget will reach RON 8.5 bln, while the budget of the Ministry of Regional Development will advance by 6 pc. The Environment will have the same sum as last year, RON 2.2 bln. For the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the increase is minor, i.e. 0.36 pc, so MAE will avail of RON 636,474,000. The Ministry for Information Society will have this year a budget of RON 205.89 M, 5.1 pc more than the budget of MCSI in 2012, of which the expenses with projects that receive non-reimbursable financing from abroad will amount to RON 57.7 M, respectively 28 pc of the total. The most underprivileged ministry this year will be Culture, with RON 578 M and a reduction of 4.7 pc. The Ministry of Interior will lose 3.9 pc of its funding, down to RON 8.3 bln. The Labour ministry will see its budget cut by 2 pc, to RON 30.4 bln. With a reduction of 1.9 pc, Justice too ranges among the ministries that will lose part of their funds. The Ministry of European Funds will receive in 2013 RON 184,092,000 from the budget, according to data released by the Ministry of Finance. The increase against 2012 amounts to 379.24 pc. For 2016 one expects budget allotments of RON 189,108,000. The Constitutional Court will receive in 2013 a budget of RON 15.26 M, 18.75 pc more than in 2012, according to the draft budget.
More funds for Parliament and Presidency
Although PM Ponta had announced that the Parliament will remain with the same budget as in 2012, despite the increase in the number of legislators, the two Houses will however receive more funds. The Chamber of Deputies will enjoy a 9.6 pc increase to RON 211.6 M and the Senate will see its budget increased by 1.5 pc, to RON 85.6 M. Another beneficiary of increases is Traian Basescu, as the budget of the Presidential Administration will reach RON 26 M, 15.8 pc higher than in 2012.
Economic growth of 1.6 pc and exchange rate of 4.5 RON/EUR
The draft budget for 2013 takes into consideration an economic growth estimated at 1.6 pc and a deficit of 2.1 pc of the GDP. The average exchange rate taken into account by the Ministry of Finance is 4.5 RON/EUR. The figures were agreed by the IMF and are in line with the estimations of the World Bank. However the levels indicated in the draft budget prove to be more pessimistic than the figures announced recently by Premier Victor Ponta, respectively an economic growth of 1.8 pc and a budget deficit of 1.7 pc. The state budget was calculated with incomes worth RON 98,182.6 M and expenses of RON 116,359.3 M, and a deficit of RON 18,176.7 M.