Greek Parliament passes 2023 budget, forecasts primary surplus

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The Greek Parliament has approved Greece’s 2023 budget which calls for primary surplus and will offer subsidies for 85% of households and businesses as inflation looms.

According to AP News, the budget passed 156-143 in the 300-member parliament on Saturday evening after a five-day intense debate.

It is the first budget in 13 years drafted without the surveillance of Greece’s creditors.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, left, shakes hands with Finance Minister Christos Staikouras during a parliament session for the budget of 2023. Photo: AP Photo/Yorgos Karahalis.

While Greece rebounded strongly from a recession due to the coronavirus pandemic, the parliament forecasted economic growth will slow to 1.8% in 2023 from 5.6% this year.

To combat this, the primary surplus in the budget means the Greek government will spend less on current income from taxes and exclude the servicing of the country’s debt.

The new budget will also support households and businesses struggling due to inflation, which is expected to average 5% in 2023.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis also announced his government will subsidise electricity bills and in February 2023, for six months, will subsidise purchases of foodstuff. The new budget will fund these subsidies through a windfall tax on the country’s two oil refiners.

Source: AP News.

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