Commission praises Estonia for budget compliance

18.11.2013, 16:02

Draft budgets 2014 of only two Eurozone members – Estonia and Germany – comply with the Stability and Growth Pact rules, the European Commission said in its assessment of the budgetary plan published on Friday.

"Estonia has made some progress in addressing the structural part of the fiscal recommendations issued by the Council in the context of the European Semester," a representative of the European Commission said.

Commenting the Commission’s endorsement, Estonian Finance Minister Jürgen Ligi said that while it was encouraging to hear such praise to Estonia’s draft budget, he was doubtful whether this will give any added value in the internal budget debate in Estonia.

Speaking of Estonia, Natalie Lubenets, cabinet member of commissioner on finance and economic affairs Olli Rehn, said that Estonia should re-consider its planned budget deficit.

Lubenets said that while the Commission recognises Estonia for meeting the budgetary rules and regulations, it may be necessary to have another look at whether the budget deficit that Estonia plans to have in 2014 is justified.

She said that a budget deficit would not be a problem in itself, but suggested that the government looks at planned public expenditure and checks that they are necessary to be financed by debt.