Lawmakers give 2021 budget initial approval

The Chamber of Deputies has approved the 2021 state budget draft in its first reading, setting the planned deficit at 320 billion crowns.

The proposed budget passed thanks to the support from the ruling ANO and the Social Democrats as well as the Communist Party. President Miloš Zeman also voiced his support for the draft budget in the Parliament.

Members of the opposition have criticized the proposal. The draft does not take into account the currently discussed changes in tax laws - which include the abolition of the super-gross wage and a reduction in income tax. If these changes pass, the budget's revenues would decrease and the final deficit could be much higher than 320 billion.

Some opposition parties have therefore suggested that the government further revise the budget - but there were not enough votes for this proposal. The draft budget will now be discussed by parliamentary committees.