According to the president of the parliamentary finance committee from Svoboda, Andreja Kert, the coalition will not submit an amendment that would increase the proposed 70% adjustment of transfers to inflation to 100%. “At the moment we are united to stick with what the government has proposed,” he says.
November 21, 2023 12:36 p.m
The draft law on the implementation of the budget for next year, which is being decided by deputies at this regular session, assumes that social transfers in the coming year would not be adjusted to inflation.
Last week, coalition MPs submitted an amendment proposing a 70 percent adjustment of consumer price growth between December 2022 and December 2023. The government also agreed to the amendment, and it was supported by the parliamentary finance committee on Saturday.
In politics, however, calls are constantly being heard for transfers to be fully harmonized. For example, this wish was expressed by a member of the coalition Left at the Finance Committee Milan Jakopovic. The opposition SDS and NSi also proposed an amendment with which social transfers would be adjusted for the full amount of inflation, but they were not successful.
Comparison with pension matching
Chairwoman of the Parliamentary Finance Committee and Member of Parliament for Svoboda Andreja Kert when asked whether the coalition might still file an amendment before considering the law and propose 100% harmonization, she said that, according to her information, the coalition is united in following the government’s proposal. Which therefore means that the representatives of Svoboda, SD and Left will not introduce the amendment and that they will not support the amendment to harmonize social transfers with inflation, which was again proposed by the opposition SDS and NSi.
Kert refused to think that it was the poor who starved the most. “Concerns were indeed raised about the original proposal that the transfers should not be coordinated at all. The government made a serious consideration and found that transfers were adjusted by 10.3 percent this year, but pensions were not. Thus, the government has decided for next year that transfers will be coordinated by 70 percent, and pensions will be fully coordinated,” said Kert, adding that, in her opinion, the government has thus ensured a balanced coordination.
She also welcomed the government’s decision to lift the statutory freeze on salary adjustments in the public sector. As Kert said, this is a matter of negotiations with the unions.
Significant impact on inflation
She also warned that in times of high inflation, such coordination should be reconsidered. “I hope that we all realize that in the next year it is necessary to pay attention to the fact that coordination is not 100%. If we do not follow the monetary policy with the fiscal policy, it will be difficult to curb inflation and to talk about moving to a stable welfare state that will enable everyone to live decently.”
The member of Svoboda also warned that in the long term the state will not be able to mitigate the effects of high inflation with aid, as it has been doing until now.