The House of Representatives plenary approved the 2023 state budget, the last to be tabled by the 10-year administration of Nicos Anastasiades.
The budget was approved by 29 votes in favour and 24 against.
The budget provides for general government revenue amounting to €11.76 billion and expenditure amounting to €11.29 billion. The budget features fiscal surplus of €0.46 billion corresponding to 1.7% of GDP while primary (excluding debt servicing expenditure) is estimated a 3% of GDP.
According to the budget macroeconomic scenario GDP growth is estimated to slow down to 3% in 2023 from a projected 6% this year and will amount to 3.3% and 3.2% in 2024 and 2025 respectively. Inflation is estimated to decline to 3% in 2023 from a projected 7.7% in 2022.
Primary spending in 2023 is expected to mark an increase of €554 million, while social transfers are estimated to increase by 4%.
The parliament froze a series of state expenditure worth over one hundred million euro, requesting either the parliamentary committee of financial and budgetary affairs’ written approval before their disbursement or the submission of a written briefing to the Committee.
Petrides welcomes House approval
Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides welcomed the approval of the 2023 state budget, the last budget tabled by the ten-year administration of outgoing President Nicos Anastasiades.
“The budget is not myopic, it sees the future, giving special tools to tackle the short-term crises we are facing,” Petrides said in statements following the vote in the plenary.
As he noted, the budget aims at the challenges of tomorrow, with green and sustainable growth and digital transformation without burdening future generations.
Noting that fiscal planning would be different if it weren’t for the challenges of the next two years, Petrides wished the next government will implement the budget along with reforms.
“A budget is never enough for one country to go forward, structures should change and reforms should be implemented,” he added.