Банкеръ Weekly

Briefs

EXPERTS: LIABILITIES TO THE BUDGET EXCEED BGN1BN

Liabilities of households and companies to the public purse exceed BGN1BN and this could result in a series of bankruputcies and shortage of revenues to the State budget, economists commented during the week. Perils to the national economy and to the effective currency board might be also the unstable payment balance, the lack of solvent demand, and inadequate management of the fiscal account. The huge share of the grey sector also deprives the economy of significant financial resource. A reserch of the World Bank has established that 20% of the money of companies which conceal their turnover are used for bribes and other expenses for the black accounting.Unemployement is still a great problem. The number of jobless people is about 18% of Bulgaria's population, while unemployement in Romania (with which we are stepping forward to membership in the European Union) is 9 per cent. VAT rate, according to experts, should go down by at least 2% in 2004-2005, but this has not been set in the tax strategy. Two important elements are missing in the Government's document - volunteer registration of companies under VAT and a scheme for reducing the term for refunding the tax credit, they point out. According to their estimates, the State guarantees for annual investment loans up to USD700-800MN should be increased in order to develop investment demand in Bulgaria and set up strategic infrastructural facilities - highways, airports, electricity power stations, etc.

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