The Government has not complied with the Conclusion of the Parliament and has not yet submitted the mid-year budget execution report. This is a blatant violation of the Parliament’s Conclusion which was unanimously adopted accompanying the 2014 Budget Law, upon the proposal of the Socialist People’s Party (SNP).
According to the adopted Conclusion, the report was expected to show whether the growth in revenue collection was achieved in so far as envisaged by the Plan of the Budget Law. If determined that it was, the Conclusion of the Parliament obliged the Government to propose measures for reallocating these funds with the aim of increasing expenditure for social welfare and protection of vulnerable classes of society.
The Government failed to fulfill this obligation and to this day has not submitted the requested report to the Parliament. The deadline for submission determined by the Parliament was June 30, 2014.
This way, MPs’ attempt to ensure being more adequately informed about the budget execution, and indirectly, exert greater degree of parliamentary control over the budget, was hindered.
Let us remind that Montenegrin Ministry of Finance is the only one in the region that does not submit semi-annual reports to the Parliament on the execution of the budget. The Bill on Budget and Fiscal Responsibility does not stipulate the obligation of the Ministry of Finance to prepare and submit to the Parliament a report on the budget execution during the course of the fiscal year for which the budget was adopted. From the moment the next year’s budget is adopted in December of the current year, the Parliament and the relevant Committee have no information about its execution until September of the following year, when the final account of the budget is submitted for review.
While participating in drafting the Law on Budget and Fiscal Responsibility, Institute Alternative has proposed to precisely define the obligation of semi-annual reporting to the Parliament on the budget execution. We have also proposed to introduce an obligation to the Ministry of Finance to submit a report on the current state of budget execution at the request of the Parliament, which can be made at any time.
None of these suggestions were accepted and today we find ourselves in the situation where the Parliamentary conclusions are neglected by the Government and the Ministry of Finance.
Institute Alternative, with the support of the Open Society Foundations – Think Tank Fund, implements the project “Analytical Monitoring of the Oversight Function of the Parliament” which aims to strengthen the impact of implementation of the parliamentary control mechanisms.
Public Policy Researcher