Minister Bevanda: I expect budget to be adopted, decision on temporary financing helped us avoid problems

EPA/Laszlo Beliczay

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In an interview for Banja Luka-based daily newspaper Glas Srpske, Minister of Finance and Treasury of Bosnia and Herzegovina Vjekoslav Bevanda said that he expected the 2018 budget of institutions of BiH to be adopted in weeks to come. 

Commenting on the fact that the Council of Ministers (CoM) of BiH has passed decision on temporary financing for the first time since the first quarter of 2012, Bevanda said that it was a “consequence of political relations and problems with parliamentary majority”.

From the professional point of view, I can say that there are no blockades of any kind when it comes to financing of institutions of BiH (…) because we have prepared and adopted the decision (on temporary financing) in a timely manner”, Bevanda said.

He added that servicing of foreign debt would also be carried out without any problems whatsoever, and underlined that everything was in line with the law.

I expect that we will adopt the budget for 2018 with much more understanding and reason than one could have heard at previous sessions of the Parliament of BiH”, Bevanda concluded.

We have general elections in 2018, and a series of important activities on the path towards the EU which need to be financed (…) and to do that, it is necessary to adopt the budget. It is very important that we have adopted changes to the set of laws on excise duties and that we have unblocked investment projects”, Bevanda said.

Minister of Finance and Treasury of BiH rejected speculations that failure to adopt the budget for 2018 was some sort of HDZ BiH’s revenge against SDA and other Bosniak political parties, because of the way they had treated the changes to the Election Law.  

Bevanda said that if HDZ BiH wanted to block anything, they could have done that in many different ways. “But we did not do that even while illegitimate and illegal governments were being formed (…) Budget is being created by minister from HDZ, and HDZ leader, as a member of the collective chief of state, is constitutional proponent - so, how exactly are we blocking it? That is the strange way of thinking, to say the least”, Bevanda said.

“Changes to the Election Law are something that needs to be done, both because of our obligations towards the EU and because of our internal relations”, he concluded.