God forbid that this year is 20 days longer – our government would use that time to do one or two more budget rebalances.
No one seriously expected what our government is doing now – the previous rebalance is still warm, and the government, hastily and before adoption of the budget for next year, is doing – another rebalance.
It’s been a long time since such a scandal with fiddling with the financial account of the state has been seen in the history of modern states.
The first scandal happened at the end of October – rebalance increased the budget deficit to 225 billion dinars instead of 182 billion dinars. Then our government explained that the deficit has increased “because of falling GDP and lower revenues and higher expenditures than planned”.
Another scandal occurred a few days ago when the government sent a request to the Parliament (in the form of a law) for another, of course, urgent rebalance of this year’s budget; it’s about 19 billion dinars (160 million euros) of some kind of guarantees to cover up the mischief of “our aviation wonder, which is the envy of all” – Air Serbia.
Is it possible? Two rebalances in only a month and a half?
A budget rebalance is usually done because of the poor planning of the government.
But two revisions, well, that is something much more serious; it is an evidence of the government’s incompetence, as well as recognition of their irresponsibility. Two rebalances in a month and a half give the impression of not only amateurism, but also attempts of political rape of public finances.
And so our government provided an unusual entertainment for the year’s end – skeletons falling out of the closet, in which our government has been diligently stuffing them for the past 11 and a half months, believing that it would hide their misdeeds in the management of the state and public finance.
In the meantime, International Monetary Fund demanded that all costs be presented (even those labeled “bilateral” and “strategic”), and so all the populist pranks became transparent. Now the bills which need to be paid urgently, as enforcers cannot be delayed, have been handed to our government.
The two rebalances have an upside: they are a proof that the scams can’t be hidden under the carpet by throwing “strategic” dust into the eyes of the citizens and the public.
At the end of the year it all comes out and appears on the state account.
Instead of learning their lesson, our government is once again trying to hide its mischiefs by making unseen precedents and new stunts – it sent a paper impressively titled “Proposed amendments to the Law on Amendments to the Law on Budget for 2014” to the parliament.
Perhaps much of this nonsense and embarrassment could have been avoided if the budget rebalance was done in July, as the then circumstances warranted and as the prime minister promised. Officially, it was not done because of, um – the floods.
It seems more likely – and is clear now – that our government wanted at all costs to conceal from the citizens and the public the poor state of the state and to leave space for new scams with public money.
In order to cover up all this and minimize the responsibility, the visit of Li Keqiang was made into a Chinese circus.
Translated by Marijana Simic