Government Predicts €8 Billion Budget for 2014
The Cabinet continued preliminary 2014 budget talks today, predicting a 200 to 300 million euro increase from the current year's budget of around 7.7 billion euros.
Finance Minister Jürgen Ligi said at the government press conference today that there will be no cutbacks, as reserves are strong and efforts to tackle tax dodgers are working.
Prime Minister Andrus Ansip said the worse-than-expected economic growth will not have an automatic effect on budget incomes. He added that other indicators are more positive, such as the high employment rate and increased corporate tax revenues.
Social Minister Taavi Rõivas said that old age pensions would be on average 5.8 percent higher in 2014 compared with this year, adding roughly 20 euros to per month to pensioners' wallets.
State pensions increased by 5 percent this year, not the 7 percent pensioners would have received if the government had used its usual formula for calculating pensions. The government said in March that, according to the same formula, it would have had to cut pensions during the recession, but did not. At the time the government also promised to raise state pensions by 6 percent in 2014.