Belarus' draft budget for 2017 has been adopted. In the second reading, the absolute majority of deputies voted for the draft of the main financial document. It will retain social orientation. One-third part of the budget will be earmarked for state programs: in education - for the development of innovative approaches, while in health care focus will be made on affordability and quality.
Payroll fund will increase by 9%, while labor pensions will be increased twice.
State revenues were approved in the amount of more than BYN18 billion, expenses over BYN16 billion.
Valery Borodenya, member of the Budget and Finance Committee of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus:
Globally we did not redraw the budget, because a lot of work has been done since April 2016. This work was carried out jointly with the deputies. We took into account the wishes of many members of our committee. Therefore, we did not need any serious amendments.
I think that this is just our achievement, that we are working together, all authorities. And that we can negotiate not only in the Oval Hall but also during meetings of working committees.
The structure of budget revenues has not changed much.
Over 40% of planned revenues will come from value-added tax.
Ending work of the fifth convocation the deputies also voted for the changes in the Tax Code.
The main purpose of the amendments is to simplify taxation. Deputies' proposals were also taken into account.
Ella Selitskaya, Deputy Minister for Taxes and Duties of the Republic of Belarus:
This also applies to the establishment of rates in Belarusian rubles (earlier some of them were set in US dollars). We are working on the de-dollarization of the economy, including in the tax legislation. The deputies initiated a number of changes on the part of improving the property tax.
The House of Representatives also ratified the agreement on the abolition of visas for citizens of Belarus and Brazil, as well as with the special administrative region of China - Macau.