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Public deficit higher than expected

January 9th, 2024

A business analyst questions official claims that 2023 was a better year for the budget than 2022.

On Index, Gábor Regős, director of the Makronóm Economic Research Institute, sees the state of public finances as warranting a revision of this year’s budget. The public deficit amounted to 6 percent of GDP, one-third higher than originally planned. True, he adds, Parliament passes budgets in May of the previous year when developments during the year ahead are hard to predict in such turbulent times. As a result, last year’s deficit had to be readjusted several times, but even the final estimate proved somewhat overly optimistic. In 2022, the deficit amounted to 6.2 percent of GDP, but one-fifth of that was due to one extraordinary gas purchase deal. Thus, Regős sees no improvement, despite official claims to the contrary, and suggests that the 2024 budget will have to be revised, as it was based on earlier 2023 estimates.



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