On Thursday, the Sejm sent the draft budget for 2024 to the committee. – Money for TVP is withheld. Please read the submitted projects and the submitted act carefully, said Minister of Finance Andrzej Domański, referring to the MPs’ questions. The possibility of transferring money to public media is included in the budget-related act.
On Thursday afternoon, the first reading of the draft budget act for 2024 ended in the Sejm. The budget revenues planned in the project will amount to PLN 682.4 billion, expenses are not to exceed PLN 866.4 billion, and the deficit is not to exceed PLN 184 billion.
Minister of Finance on the draft budget for 2024
After Thursday’s debate, Minister of Finance Andrzej Domański answered MPs’ questions, including: about an increase in the deficit for next year.
– The deficit has increased due to the highest pay raises for teachers in history – 30 percent – said the Minister of Finance. As he said, “Donald Tusk’s government treats these increases as an investment, because better education of society leads to higher economic growth in the long term.”
Domański also announced actions aimed at increasing the transparency of public finances. – Our declared will to create a Fiscal Council is the first, but not the only step we will take in the coming months to increase the transparency of public finances – explained the head of the Ministry of Finance.
Andrzej Domański also reminded that there has been a recent decline in profitability treasury bonds to below 5%, while earlier this year these yields reached up to 9%. – There will be a restriction on the “Belka tax” (capital gains tax of 19 percent – ed.), but this could not be done in four days – explained the minister.
He also said that “if we are talking about 20% increases for the budget sector, they will be covered by them ZUS and KRUS. – National Health Fund no, because the financing is different there, noted the head of the Ministry of Finance.
Money for public media
Andrzej Domański also referred to money for public television. The total amount is nearly PLN 3 billion. The minister emphasized that “money for TVP is withheld.”
Pursuant to the budget-related act, public media in 2024 will be able to receive compensation for lost subscription fees in the amount of a maximum of PLN 1.995 billion. “In 2024, the minister responsible for budget, at the request of the National Broadcasting Council, may transfer treasury securities to public radio and television broadcasting entities as compensation for the revenues from license fees lost in 2024,” we read in the budget-related act.
Additionally, public media will be able to receive another PLN 1 billion. The budget-related act states that “in 2024, the minister responsible for the budget may transfer to the minister responsible for culture and protection of national heritage, at his request, treasury securities for the purpose of transferring them to public radio and television broadcasting entities to increase the share capital of these entities, if “it is necessary for the implementation of their tasks specified in the Act of 29 December 1992 on Broadcasting (…), however, the nominal value of Treasury securities issued for this purpose may not exceed PLN 1,000,000 thousand” .
– A question that is asked regularly in this debate. Question about funds for TVP. The money for TVP is withheld. Please read the submitted projects and the submitted act carefully, said the head of the Ministry of Finance.
At the same time, the Minister of Finance announced that he would soon present a plan for expenditure on oncology together with the Minister of Health, Izabela Leszczyna. He noted that revenues to the National Health Fund next year will be PLN 8 billion higher.
During the election campaign, the Civic Coalition promised to “immediately” stop financing the “factory of lies and hatred that has become TVP and other public media.” “In line with our commitment, we will allocate PLN 2 billion from TVP for cancer treatment” – it was written among one hundred details.
Draft budget for 2024 – dates
The draft budget act for 2024 was submitted to the Parliamentary Public Finance Committee.
– Pursuant to Article 106 of the Rules of Procedure of the Sejm, the Sejm refers the draft budget law to the Public Finance Committee for consideration, and individual parts of the bill are also considered by the relevant Sejm committees, which forward to the Public Finance Committee their positions containing conclusions, opinions or proposed amendments together with justification – said Piotr, Deputy Speaker of the Sejm. Zgorzelski (PSL-Trzecia Droga).
– In accordance with the resolution of the Presidium of the Sejm on determining the procedure for work on the draft budget act for 2024, the Sejm committees will submit their positions to the Public Finance Committee by December 29, 2023, and the Finance Committee will adopt the report by January 5, 2024 – he added.
The second reading of the bill at the plenary session of the Sejm is scheduled for January 10, 2024, and the third reading, i.e. voting, is scheduled to take place on January 12. The Senate is scheduled to finish considering the bill by January 22. It is expected that the budget will be signed by the president on January 29.
Earlier on Thursday, the Sejm passed the budget-related act for 2024. Now the bill will go to the Senate.
Main photo source: PAP/Paweł Supernak