In the end of July 2017, the Bulgarian government published its financial priorities for 2017-2021. These priorities include: sustainable economic development; sustainable wealth growth; and the use of decisive measures to combat illegal economic activity.
The government aims to maintain macroeconomic stability through increased functioning and transparency of the financial system. To achieve this, the government plans to continue the policy of adhering to realistic fiscal targets, drafting conservative budget forecasts, and reducing the budget deficit over the medium term to reach a zero budget deficit in 2020.
In order to ensure a coherent, transparent, and predictable fiscal policy, the government will:
i. increase administrative capacity through staff training in the area of financial management and budgeting; and
ii. implement expenditure classifications for policy and budget programs to improve the strategic planning process.
Another proposal is to establish a “Public Control Board” capable of dividing and coordinating the functions and responsibilities of other fiscal control bodies. The first step in creating the Public Control Board will be to draw up a framework agreement with all controlling institutions, which will describe the scope of responsibilities and functions of the different control bodies and will aim to avoid duplication of resources. The Public Control Board will initiate regular meetings with representatives of the different control bodies to coordinate and synchronize their annual plans.
The program also aims to provide conditions for high, sustainable, balanced and inclusive economic growth. To do so, the government will follow the National Development Program 2020 and its action plans, and adopt the National Development Strategy 2030.
Illegal economic activity
Finally, the government aims to raise revenue in the state budget by effectively preventing and combating customs, tax, and insurance fraud, as well as tax evasion. This will be achieved by:
i. improving legislation, increasing the effectiveness of control, and strengthening intra-institutional cooperation and exchange of information to prevent tax evasion and non-payment of insurance contributions and fees;
ii. simplifying administrative procedures and expanding the extent and quality of e-services to create conditions for more cost-effective and easier compliance with the law;
iii. exchanging information with the National Revenue Agency to perform cross-checks on services provided by the controlling entities;
iv. improving the control exercised by the Public Financial Inspection Agency; and
v. drawing up a unified methodology for control over the implementation of contracts under the Public Procurement Act.