Verkhovna Rada, Ukrainian parliament, adopted the austerity-driven state budget for 2015 during an extraordinary night session on Dec. 29.
Lawmakers approved the document, many not even seeing it, around 4:15 a.m.
Government plans to collect $30 in revenue, including $1.1 billion from selling the state-owned assets, and spend $33. As much as $5.7 billion will be allocated to defense and security purposes, $4.7 billion – to servicing the public debt and $5.7 – to the pension fund.
Meanwhile, the fiscal deficit is not expected to exceed $4 billion, which is 3.7 percent of the projected gross domestic product of $108 billion.
Budget is based on a forecast of a 4.3-percent GDP contraction and 13.1-percent inflation next year. Cabinet foresees hryvnia’s rate against the U.S. dollar at 17.
“To be fair, this budget, as well as all the previous budgets adopted in these walls, is far from being perfect,” said Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk in a session hall after the bill was adopted. “This is why we’ve included a requirement to conduct a mandatory review of it until Feb. 15.”
Ukraine’s financial plan may be changed depending on the results of negotiations with foreign creditors, he added.
The International Monetary Fund, country’s key source of financial support and policy suggestions, has immediately spread the news release on Dec. 29 that its team will begin its work in Kyiv on Jan. 8 and will keep working until the end of the month.
“The IMF is moving expeditiously to continue discussions with the Ukrainian authorities on the IMF-supported economic reform program aiming to stabilize the Ukrainian economy and restore sustainable growth,” it says.
The budget doesn’t really exist, the Cabinet is just about to start writing it, mentioned Igor Lutsenko, a member of parliament with Yulia Tymoshenko’s Batkivshchyna party, in a blog on Ukrayinska Pravda website. “A budget draft that was passed around several days ago is out of date.”
“Blessing the rape (of Rada so it would adopt the budget) with the national anthem is a very special sort of patriotism,” wrote Sergiy Leshchenko, member of Petro Poroshenko’s Bloc in parliament. “I didn’t vote for it.”