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Wednesday 18.10.2017 | Name days: Rolanda, Rolands, Ronalds, Erlends
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Income from port contributions to Latvia's budget to be used for road maintenance

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUBudget income collected from port contributions should be diverted for road maintenance – this was the proposal of representatives of Reform Party (RP) voiced on the meeting of the Coalition Parties Cooperation Council this Monday, August 19.

“Our proposal was supported by the majority of the coalition partners. We urged to divert these budget funds for the maintenance of state roads today. This will allow the government to free up some additional funds for social needs – teachers’, doctors’ and interior’ workers salaries and social benefits,” – says a member of RP’s Board, Education and Science Minister Vyacheslav Dombrovskis.

Coalition partners have conceptually approved this proposal. It will be added to the budget planning process. RP will submit a fully developed bill on the next meeting of coalition partners.

BNN had previously reported that one of the possible options to increase state budget revenue is to introduce port contributions. The Reform Party (RP) has presented this proposal to its coalition partners.

This proposal provides for having port management pay a part of the port’s income as contributions to the state budget. This will not impact the competitiveness of Latvian ports. The contributions themselves will depend on work results, RP reports.

The Finance Ministry and coalition partners were presented with two options how to secure additional revenue to the state budget using port activities. One of the options involves amending Section 14 of the Law on Ports, adding a point that states a specific share of port income to be transferred to the state budget (10% – 30%). The second option provides the introduction of similar contributions.

“Unlike large state companies like Latvijas valsts meži (Latvia’s State Forests), Latvijas dzelzceļš (Latvian Railway) and others, ports to not transfer any money to the state budget. The argument that companies have different management structure has no place and cannot be considered an obstacle,” – believes Chairwoman of Saeima European Affairs Committee Zanda Kalnina-Lukasevica.

“The state budget could receive several millions of additional budget money from this option. This money can then be diverted to efforts aimed at reducing social inequality and contribute to the overall development of Latvia’s economy,” – the deputy says.

There are three large ports in Latvia – Ventspils, Riga and Liepaja. All three have strategic infrastructure at their disposal. The port is paid considerable money by clients that operate within the port’s territory. The ports themselves do not transfer any of these payments to the state budget.

Tallinn port performs payments to the Estonian state budget in two forms: dividends and taxes. The port paid a total of EUR 42.8 million to the state in 2012, including EUR 33.8 million as dividends.

According to estimates of the Economy Ministry, the total income of Riga, Ventspils and Liepaja ports was LVL 57.2 million in 2012.

Ref: 102.109.109.8689


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