The Saeima adopts amendments to the state budget for 2011


On Thursday, 14 April, the Saeima adopted in the second and final reading amendments to the state budget for 2011 and nine budget-related laws.

The amendments introduce spending cuts estimated at LVL 6.8 million by slashing expenditures of the government, ministries and other public administration institutions, as well as earmarked subsidies for municipalities. Budget income is expected to grow by LVL 21.2 million.

At the meetings of the Budget and Finance (Taxation) Committee, which is responsible for processing the draft law, and at the plenary sitting, MPs have considered altogether 145 proposals of amendments to the Law on the State Budget for 2011 and budget-related laws.

The amendments to the state budget introduce changes in laws on various taxes, including the provision to apply a standard VAT rate to natural gas as of 1 July.

The excise tax on cigarettes will be increased to LVL 52 per 1,000 cigarettes, and the excise tax on smoking tobacco will be increased to LVL 34 per kilo. The excise tax on strong alcohol will reach LVL 940 per 100 l of absolute alcohol as of 1 June this year. 

As a result of the amendments, gambling taxes will also increase; for example, higher tax rates will apply to roulette, card games, dice games, and slot machines. The excise tax for fuel will increase by LVL 0.02 per litre.

The limits on benefits for illness, maternity, paternity, parenthood and unemployment will be extended until 31 December 2014. Before the amendments were passed these limits were expected to be in force only until 31 December 2012.

Saeima Press Service

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