After it became known that the General State Budget for 2023 will have an increase of B/.1,236.5 million compared to the modified budget for 2022, the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (CCIAP) expressed its concern and requested the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) that establishes a Budget “coherent with the national and international situation and sincere with the population”.
Through their newsletter Cámara Opina, they explained that the General State Budget for fiscal year 2023 is far from recognizing the national economic, financial and fiscal reality, where a significant reduction in operating expenses is urgent in order to increase current savings. and allow a prioritized public investment that supports the necessary generation of jobs.
In addition, they cited the fact that subsidies, payroll and special pensions absorb a large percentage of the budget amounting to B/.27,162.9 million; coupled with a budget allocation of B/.150 million to the Legislative Branch, a new increase of B/.15 million, and without reflecting any of the containment and austerity measures announced before the current crisis.
They rejected the fact that the budget of the National Secretariat of Science, Technology and Innovation has been reduced in B/. 3.7 million, representing less than 1% for research and development and the allocation of B/. 20 million that by law correspond to the Tourism Promotion Fund in order to position Panama as a destination and attract international tourism that leaves fresh money in the country.
“Panama can no longer stand waste and indebtedness. We all have the obligation to pay taxes according to the law, but the population also demands the adequate, strategic and transparent use of State resources, which after all are the contributions of Panamanians,” they pointed out.