Polish parliament passes 2021 budget law

After debate the bill got 234 votes in favour and 220 against, with one abstention. Mateusz Marek/PAP

Poland’s lower house of parliament has passed the 2021 budget that comes with a EUR 18.5 billion deficit owing to government pouring money into an economy hit hard by coronavirus pandemic.

After debate the bill got 234 votes in favour and 220 against, with one abstention.

The lower house approved just over a dozen amendments filed by the ruling party MPs, while scrapping hundreds of others suggested by MPs.

The bill foresees revenues at PLN 404.4 billion (EUR 91.2 billion) and expenditures at PLN 486.7 billion (EUR 109.7), with a deficit of PLN 82.3 billion (EUR 18.5 billion).

According to the Polish Finance Ministry, the deficit will support economic growth during the Covid-19 pandemic through investment. The government has also vowed to continue its key social programmes.

The budget deficit, as calculated according to EU methodology, will reach 6 percent of the country's GDP. The general government debt, which also covers local governments, is to reach 64.7 percent of GDP.

GDP growth is expected at 4 percent, consumer prices are expected to rise by 1.8 percent, wages are to grow by an average of 2.8 percent, and household consumption will increase by 6.3 percent.

To improve the quality of healthcare and to stem the spread of coronavirus, Poland will spend an additional PLN 12.9 billion (EUR 2.91 billion) on health service.

The bill will now go to the upper house, the Senate. If approved, the legislation will go to the president, who will have seven days to sign it into law.