Bevanda: Bosnia's fiscal stability threatened

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Source: N1

Bosnia’s Finance Minister and the Head of the Indirect Taxation Authority’s (ITA) Management Board Vjekoslav Bevanda said that Bosnia and Herzegovina’s fiscal stability has been threatened by the Republika Srpska (RS) entity’s decision to block all the ITA’s accounts.

Yesterday, the RS authorities decided to block all the accounts belonging to Bosnia’s ITA due to ITA's failure to execute the verdict by the Court of Bosnia on Herzegovina from 2015 on RS’ lawsuit against the ITA, demanding a BAM 52 million (around EUR 26 million) payment on account of distribution of revenues collected from the value-added tax (VAT) from 2009 and 2010, belonging to RS.

After the BAM 52 million was paid, the Court ordered a payment of BAM 15 million (EUR 7 million) with statutory interest rates.  

Bevanda said he did everything in his power to prevent this situation. The ITA Management Board has discussed the possible solutions to this problem several times and that it was clear every time that this scenario was possible. He added that this was the worst possible solution for the most profitable and one of the best institutions in the country.  

He recalled that the Management Board had offered several solutions to this problem but the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina entity representatives rejected each one. Failure to find a solution to this issue directly threatens the fiscal stability of the entire country.    

Therefore, Bevanda suggested that the ITA Management Board sessions, as well as the sessions of the Council of Ministers and the Fiscal Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina, be open to the public so that the public could finally see who cares about the general interest of the country, and who cares about political games.  

In the end, he called on all political actors to find a compromise on this issue.  

On Friday, the ITA performed a regular distribution of VAT funds in the amount of BAM 25.4 million (around 13 million). BAM 1.1 million (around EUR 500,000) less than expected because the Nova Banka had blocked these funds. Also, additional BAM 478,000 (around EUR 230,000) worth of deposit funds were blocked by the NLB Development Bank.

Thus the RS entity collected around BAM 1.5 million (around EUR 700,000) of the total debt worth BAM 15 million (around EUR 7 million) plus interests, resulting in the total amount of BAM 28 million (around 14 million).

(EUR 1 = BAM 1.95583)