Cristóbal Montoro, Spain’s minister responsible for hauling in the taxes and then deciding what to do with them, is still keeping a close control over public spending. The State Budget for 2015 presented on Tuesday contains total spending for 2015 of 315.5 billion euros, just 0.4 per cent more than this year, not even an increase in line with inflation.
“The more we contain our spending, the stronger we will be after the crisis,” he said on Tuesday.
His government’s forecast of an increase in the GDP of two per cent next year has not swayed him to release his hold on the purse strings, especially with talk this week of a third recession in Europe potentially on the horizon.
“Spain has problems that other countries of the European Union don’t have,” said the minister.
The figures released this week for next year include a budget of 131 billion euros for pensions, an increase of 3.3 per cent on last year’s total. However old age pensions in Spain will only increase next year by 0.25 per cent.
Meanwhile funds set aside for unemployment benefit, however, have gone down by 14.9 per cent to 25 billion.
State government funds for education go down by 14 per cent (although this is mainly the responsibility of the regional authorities), while health spending (also mainly dependent on the regional authorities) goes up slightly by 1.5%.
For another year running the government has frozen the salaries of ministers and other officials.
Courtesy: Sur in English
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