Prime Minister sets 24 October as budget date

Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 September, 2022 at 10:30 pm by Andre Camilleri

The budget for 2023 is set to be revealed in Parliament on 24 October, Prime Minister Robert Abela said while speaking to TVM in New York.

He is currently in the USA for the UN General Assembly.

“It is a budget in a particular context,” he said, highlighting today’s realities and challenges.

He said that the budget’s priorities are stability and sustainability of measures. Abela said that the government has been offering stability since the start of the Covid pandemic in March 2020. “We are transporting those same principles to face the current challenges, be them those in energy, in the security of food provision… a number of challenges we are seeing as a consequence of the Russia-Ukraine war.”

As for sustainability, he said it is pointless providing stability if it is limited to just a period weeks, then seeing that you cannot sustain it for as long as needed.

The second principle is that all measures that will be announced will be sustainable till the day the government’s assistance for sectors remains needed, he said.

Presenting the pre-budget document earlier this month, Finance Minister Clyde Caruana said that government energy and food subsidies will amount to €472.5 million by the end of 2022. He said that next year, the government energy and food subsidies will reach €608 million. This large sum for 2023 will amount to 3.6% of gross development product (GDP). That being said, Caruana emphasised that the government is still determined to continue offering this service to the Maltese population.

Caruana had also said that as long as this crisis continues the government will still look towards reducing the deficit next year. The deficit this year should be around 5.8%, which Caruana pointed out is well within last year’s targets. Caruana pledged that even though the expenditure will be more next year, they will still manage to reduce the deficit next year.

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