Estonia Parliament Passes 2013 Budget, Narrowing Deficit

Estonia’s parliament approved next year’s budget that seeks to lower the fiscal deficit even as the opposition accuses the government of failing to tackle poverty and ease the pace of inflation.

Lawmakers voted 55-37 today to back the budget in the final of the three readings in the capital, Tallinn. The budget is based on a 2013 forecast for gross domestic product growth of 3 percent and sets a deficit of 0.7 percent of GDP, compared with a planned shortfall of 1.2 percent this year, according to an e-mailed statement from the Finance Ministry.

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