IMF MISSION EXPECTED TO ARRIVE NEXT WEEK
The International Monetary Funf (IMF) is sending a mission of its experts to Bulgaria next week, who should specify with the Bulgarian Government the parameters of the 2003 budget. The first emissaries from Washington are expected to land on September 16, and the IMF Mission Leader for Bulgaria Jerald Schiff will join two days later.This is a working technical mission during which we'll hold talks at an expert level, mostly with our colleagues from the Finance Ministry. We'll also have meetings in other key institutions - the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies, the Ministry of Economy, and the ministry of Transport and Telecommunications, IMF Resident Representative in Bulgaria Piritta Sorsa specified. During the one-week IMF's experts will analyze the flfillment of the budget, the fiscal reserve, and the payment balance. According to Ms. Sorsa, the fulfillment of the country's 2002 consolidated budget seems satisfactory and no serious problems are expected.IMF's emissaries will discuss the Bulgarian Government's proposals in the sphere of taxation policy, plans for increasing the social expenses in the budget next year (especially for the new social insurances), subsidies, and other payments.The forthcoming visit of IMF's financiers precedes the fund's regular mission in November when the implementation of the stand-by agreement with Bulgaria (signed in end-2001) will be reviewd. New terms will be set then for the fulfillment of projected measures which the Government has failed to realize so far.