BELGRADE, April 22 (Reuters) - The Serbian parliament
adjusted the budget on Thursday, increasing the deficit to 381.7
billion dinars ($3.91 billion) or 6.9% of economic output, up
from a previously planned 3%, to mitigate effects of the
coronavirus pandemic and finance growth.
The 2021 budget revamp adopted by the 250-seat assembly sets
revenues at 1,356.2 billion dinars and revenues at 1,768.4
"As many as 7.2 percent of GDP, ... will be allocated for
capital investments" this year, mainly in infrastructure and
energy, Finance Minister Sinisa Mali said ahead of the vote in
parliament, which is almost entirely dominated by allies of
President Aleksandar Vucic.
Serbia, a candidate for European Union membership, has
already launched a 2.5 billion euros-worth package to ease the
economic impact of the coronavirus.
Belgrade plans to finance the higher deficit by borrowing,
which would raise country's debt to around 60% of gross domestic
product (GDP), up from 58.2% currently, Mali said.
In January, Serbia tapped international markets with a 1
billion euro 12-year eurobond with the yield of 1.92% and 1.65%
The International Monetary Fund expects that Serbia's
economy to grow about 5% this year, following a 1.1 contraction
in 2020. The Serbian government expects growth of around 6% of
GDP this year.
($1 = 97.6900 Serbian dinars)
(Reporting by Aleksandar Vasovic; Editing by Peter Graff,