You are here

Ratas: State budget for 2018 is the budget of a more equitable Estonia

28. September 2017 - 12:51

Stenbock House, 28 September 2017 – Yesterday, at the Riigikogu, Prime Minister Jüri Ratas said that the Government will use next year's budget to contribute into improving people's living environment, increasing social equality, ensuring security, as well as long-term and sustainable growth for the economy.

When initiating the draft for the state budget, Ratas said that the Government's fiscal policy is strong and responsible, the debt burden of the government sector will decrease, tax burden will not increase and, based on current prognosis, the government sector's budgetary position will be close-to-balance.

"Next year, the state's revenue and expenditure will, for the first time, exceed 10 billion euros. The state budget allocates 3.1 billion euros to the social sector, 1.4 billion to health care and one billion to education. Investment into the field of defence, in the sum of 528 million euros, will exceed last year's investment by 26 millions. This will be the largest defence budget in Estonian history," Ratas added.

According to Ratas, the state budget is one of the most important instruments for improving life in Estonia. "Therefore, we have made several fundamental changes in our policy options when compared to the previous Government. Our aim is to reduce inequality and move towards a more balanced society. This will be achieved with the basic exemption reform, health care reform and increase in the revenue base of local governments, as well as a number of important investments, which had been postponed for far too long," he said.

The Prime Minister confirmed that the Government has, with clear choices in the state budget, placed more emphasis on combating inequality. "This does not imply sacrificing success or paying due to economic development. Quite the contrary – a more equal society is also more united, a more united society in turn is stronger and a stronger society will grow faster," said Ratas at the Riigikogu.