Minister Scicluna talks about the most crucial budget decision among other measures
Finance Minister, Edward Scicluna, has said the Ministry which he heads was responsible for the entire budget but that there were 16 measures that the Ministry itself had to implement. Among the most important budget decision was the cost of the deficit – 5.9% – with Professor Scicluna explaining that when the Government plans expenditure, this is linked to the revenue it hopes to collect and if it wants to spend more, it has to borrow. He said that a Labour Government was against the principle of borrowing and in fact had even recorded a surplus.
“Now that we are in this situation, we are being required to spend and even to borrow. But you have to borrow a figure that will not come back to bite you a year, two years, three years after, like many countries with high or very low debt which does not allow you the space to be able to help businesses and families who currently need it. ”
In addition, among other measures for which the Ministry of Finance is responsible, is the adjustment for tax relief on pensions, including those for spouses who will save up to a maximum of € 744 in tax.
There will once again be a tax refund between € 45 and € 95; while small and self-employed operators will be exempt from VAT up to € 30,000; and no tax will be paid on profits from voluntary organizations with a turnover of more than € 50,000.
Asked about the latest developments within the Financial Services Authority, Professor Scicluna said that there was a clear code of conduct and the board was currently appointing people to see if this had been broken while the necessary steps were being taken.
Economy Minister Silvio Schembri said that the budget for next year was extraordinary in terms of spending but not only.
“This is a record increase in the cost dedicated to the Ministry of Economy. Even if we only consider the particular measure about investing in industrial infrastructure, this comes at a cost of € 450 million. This, in addition to the large millions in terms of wages supplement, vouchers, other aids, which are helping our businesses. This is a commitment that the Government is giving to our families and our businesses. ”
Minister Schembri said that with such a budget, the country would have a competitive advantage over other countries. He explained how in the past, the Government had thought about catering to circumstances that could arise, as had happened now, when it is spending more because of Covid-19.