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Wednesday, 04.03.2015, 20:46
Governor of Eesti Pank: Estonia should return to a balanced budget
He noted that the keyword for the next year’s budget ought to be ‘balanced’.
In an interview to the Public Broadcasting, Hansson commented on the meeting of the European Central Bank Governing Council that took place last week and stated that there are positive signs on the euro area, the economic activity level is likely to remain weak for a rather long time. “In the third quarter we will probably not see any growth trends; if there will be growth, it will be more towards the end of the year or next year,” he estimated, cautioning, however, that the growth would not be very fast.
According to Hansson, Estonia’s outlooks have been better than many other countries. Estonia has a slightly higher inflation rate, but the economic growth prospects are much better than the European average. He explained that this is also due to the fact that the overall situation is also better in Estonia’s neighbouring countries in the Scandinavian region.
Hansson estimated that as Estonia has started drafting its 2013 State budget, the country ought to move back towards the balanced budget. “I believe that now we will have to exploit the opportunity that this year the economic growth has been faster than we expected. This means that there are certain buffers and these buffers could be used in order to move towards budgetary balance, as planned,” he explained, adding that achieving a balanced budget would create stronger opportunities, should there be any setbacks in the future.
As for the countries in the midst of the euro area crisis, Hansson believes that the plan of the European Central Bank to aid those who make efforts on their own could be a sufficient motivation for carrying out necessary reforms.