In the context of an unprecedented and dynamic situation and in view of the efforts to combat the COVID-19 outbreak globally, Bulgaria took some extraordinary and emergency measures in a number of directions, including the provision of the effective functioning of the two most important sectors in this state of emergency, i.e. healthcare and security. A number of measures supporting the businesses and the employed were also outlined in order for the economy to continue functioning. Given the fact that the state of emergency was introduced in Bulgaria only days ago, the fiscal effects will be seen a bit later and are expected to be reflected in the Consolidated Fiscal Programme performance data in the coming months. The data for March 2020 are not yet influenced by the effects both on the revenue side which will appear in the following months as a result of the modified economic environment in Bulgaria and around the world, and on the expenditure side in relation to the allocation of additional resources for the implementation of the said extraordinary measures, except for the most urgent ones.
Key CFP parameters for Q1 of 2020 based on operational data and estimates:
The CFP balance for March 2020 is negative, amounting to BGN 205.4 million.
As of March 2020, CFP revenues and grants are expected to be BGN 11,007.6 million, which accounts for 23.5% of the annual estimate. Compared to March 2019, CFP revenues grow by BGN 149.5 million, which is mainly due to the proceeds from grants and donations where EU programme and fund grants are received. The corporate income revenues are lower as a result of extending the 2020 deadlines under the Corporate Income Tax Law with the Law on the Measures and Actions in a State of Emergency which was announced by a decision of the National Assembly of 13 March 2020.
As of March 2020, the Consolidated Fiscal Programme expenditures, including the contribution of the Republic of Bulgaria to the EU budget, amount to BGN 9,732.8 million, which accounts for 20.8% of the annual estimates. For comparison, the CFP expenditures as of March 2019 amount to BGN 9,053.5 million. Compared to the same period of the previous year, the nominal increase is mainly due to the higher amount of social payments (a baseline effect from the pension increase in July 2019) and the higher capital expenditures, staff costs, subsidy costs, etc.
The part of Bulgaria’s contribution to the EU budget, as paid from the central budget as of 31.03.2020, amounts to BGN 373.6 million, which complies with the existing legislation in the area of EU own resources, i.e. Council Decision 2014/335/EU on the system of own resources of the European Union, Council Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 608/2014 of 26 May 2014 laying down implementing measures for the system of own resources of the European Union and Council Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 609/2014 of 26 May 2014 on the methods and procedure for making available the traditional, VAT and GNI-based own resources and on the measures to meet cash requirements, as amended by Council Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2016/804 of 17 May 2016.
Based on preliminary data and estimates, the CFP budget balance as of March 2020 is positive, amounting to BGN 1.274.8 million.
The statistical data and the Information Bulletin on the Execution of the State Budget and the key Consolidate Fiscal Programme indicators based on the monthly data on cash execution of first-level spending units as of March 2020 will be published on the website of the Ministry of Finance at the end of April 2020.