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Pabriks is "cautiously happy" about this year’s defense budget
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    Topics - Defence Matters ENG - News

    Pabriks is "cautiously happy" about this year’s defense budget

    RIGA, March 13 (LETA) – The Latvian defense budget this year will reach EUR 636.6 million, while Defense Minister Artis Pabriks is "cautiously happy" about it.

    In line with the government’s decision, in 2019 and in the future Latvia’s defense budget will be at 2 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). According to GDP forecasts, in 2019 it will be EUR 636,645,418, in 2020 – EUR 653,036,225, and in 2021 – EUR 688,596,225.

    Of the 2019 defense budget, EUR 392,336,689 are earmarked for current expenses, EUR 180,083,881 for reimbursements, and EUR 212,252,808 for goods and services.

    The main priorities in the defense budget are development of defense capability, increase of the military staff in order to strengthen the capability of the National Armed Forces. It is also important to ensure permanent presence of the allied forces in Latvia.

    "As a new minister who has returned to the position again, I am "cautiously happy" about this budget. As we know, the decision on increasing defense budget to 2 percent of GDP was made in 2015. Thanks to the increased budget, the armed forces have been able to make a big step forward," said the minister at the Saeima defense, interior affairs and corruption prevention committee meeting today.

    The minister said that after the 2019 budget is adopted, work on the 2020 budget should be started immediately.

    Even though the necessary 2 percent of the GDP have already been earmarked for defense, Pabriks said that the 2020 budget should be planned slightly above 2 percent to ensure a security net.

    As reported, the Cabinet of Ministers on March 5 approved draft law on Latvia’s budget for 2019 and decided to send it to Saeima for adoption.

    In 2019, revenue in the government consolidated budget are planned at EUR 9.2 billion and expenditure at EUR 9.4 billion. In the government basic budget, revenue is planned at EUR 6.4 billion and expenditure at EUR 6.8 billion. In the government special budget, revenue is planned at EUR 3 billion and expenditure at EUR 2.8 billion.

    In 2019, the general government consolidated budget is expected to run a deficit of 0.5 percent of GDP. Latvia’s GDP, meanwhile, is projected to grow 3 percent this year.

    • Published: 13.03.2019 17:54
    • LETA
    •  
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