The Parliament approved on December 17 amendments to the 2012 state budget revising total revenues from GEL 7.053 billion to Gel 7.158 billion and expenditures from GEL 6.783 billion to GEL 6.882 billion.
Finance Minister, Nodar Khaduri, told lawmakers on December 17, that amendments, which also revised funding of various ministries, were mainly needed in order to “correct over-expenditures”, which were revealed in number of ministries, including in the Ministry of Defense.
Although overall targeted 2012 tax revenues remain unchanged at GEL 6.3 billion, there have been changes in forecasted revenues from various specific taxes. Targeted revenue from personal income tax is down by GEL 26 million to GEL 1.62 billion; profit tax decreased by GEL 56 million to GEL 844 million; forecasted revenues from value added tax increased by GEL 56 million to GEL 3.07 billion; import tax (customs) went down by GEL 10 million to GEL 90 million; excise tax remained unchanged at GEL 644 million and forecasted revenues from other taxes also decreased by GEL 16 million to GEL 29 million.
The amended budget has revised upwards economic growth forecast for 2012 from 5% to 7%.
Out of 20 ministries, funding of most ministries will be increased; three ministries (Ministries for Regional Development, Finance and Foreign Affairs) will receive reduced funding and the budgets of the offices of all the four state ministers will remain unchanged.
Budgetary amendments apply to the following ministries:
- Ministry of Healthcare and Social Protection – GEL 1.821 billion (before amendments - GEL 1.809 billion);
- Defense Ministry - GEL 730.6 million (before amendments – GEL 676.5 million; 2011 – GEL 711 million; 2010 – GEL 728 million);
- Interior Ministry - GEL 587.8 million (before amendments – GEL 585 million; 2011 – GEL 568 million; 2010 – GEL 549.2 million);
- Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure – GEL 717.1 million (before amendments - GEL 982 mln);
- Ministry of Education and Science – GEL 625.7 million (before amendments – GEL 600.6 mln);
- Ministry of Agriculture - GEL 229.9 million (before amendments – GEL 148.9 million);
- Finance Ministry – GEL 108.2 million (before amendments - GEL 118.2 mln);
- Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development – GEL 145.4 million (before amendments - GEL 134.2 million);
- Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources - GEL 310.9 million (before amendments - GEL 290.1 mln);
- Justice Ministry - GEL 56.5 million (before amendments - GEL 54.1 mln);
- Ministry in charge of prison system – GEL 128.3 million (before amendments – GEL 124.9 mln);
- Foreign Ministry - GEL 82.8 million (before amendments – GEL 83.5 mln);
- Ministry of Culture and Protection of Monuments – GEL 93 million (before amendments – GEL 92.7 million);
- Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs - GEL 59.4 million (before amendments – GEL 59 million);
- Ministry of Environment Protection - GEL 19.3 million (before amendments – GEL 23.8 million);
- Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees - GEL 39.2 million (before amendments – GEL 38.1 million).
The Georgian Parliament will receive additional 2 million in 2012 that will be allocated for rehabilitation works in the Parliament’s old building in Tbilisi.
The new authorities plan to relocate the Parliament from Kutaisi back to Tbilisi if a relevant constitutional amendment is adopted by the Parliament.
Budget of biological research facility, which was launched with the U.S. support, was reduced by GEL 1.6 million and set at GEL 1.18 million. Finance Minister, Nodar Khaduri, told lawmakers, that this amendment was agreed with the project partner, apparently referring to the United States, and emphasized that downward revision of budget for Central Public Health Reference Laboratory (CPHRL) would not hamper its work.