Bosnia’s House of Peoples adopted an amended version of the 2020 state budget proposal on Tuesday, which means the country is a step closer to enabling the local election to be held in November.
The proposal, which was put together by the Presidency, was forwarded from the House of Representatives which adopted it last week. The House of Peoples adopted it, but with six amendments.
The Parliament is now forming a joint commission from both chambers which will work on harmonising the text of the two budget proposals.
Once this is done and the budget is finally adopted, it will allow for the November local vote to take place, which is why international officials have repeatedly urged Bosnian political leaders to complete the process. The 2020 local election has already been postponed from October 4 to November 15 because of the lack of a state budget.
There were 14 of 15 representatives present at the House of Peoples vote on Tuesday, and the proposal was passed with 13 votes. The leader of the HDZ BiH was not present since he recently tested positive for the coronavirus.
The budget proposal became a matter of political bickering between the ruling parties in the country. It was initially rejected by the House of Representatives on July 9th as representatives of the Bosnian Serb ruling party, the Alliance of Independent Social Democrats (SNSD), and those from Bosnia’s Croat Democratic Union (HDZ BiH) were against it.
The total revenues, receipts and financing of Bosnia's institutions in 2020 amounts to 996 million Bosnian Marks, which is the same as the total expenditures. The 2020 budget is higher than the one of 2019 by 30 million Bosnian Marks, or three percent. External debt servicing amounts to 807,552,931 Bosnian Marks and is lower by 18.2 million Bosnian Marks compared to the previous year.