Cortizo active on sessions to discuss 2024 budget before end of calendar year.

Economy

The President of the Republic, Laurentino Cortizo, called the National Assembly to extraordinary sessions from December 21 to 31.

The deputies must analyze bill 1041, which dictates the State budget for the fiscal year 2024.

Cortizo called extraordinary sessions, because the plenary session of the National Assembly is in recess until January 2, 2024, but to discuss the budget it must be agreed by the Executive.

Through Cabinet Resolution No. 135 of December 18, 2023, modifications were authorized to the General State Budget bill for the fiscal period of 2024, presented to the National Assembly.

The call for the extraordinary sessions was made this December 20, when 34 years of the United States invasion of Panama were remembered.

The Cabinet Council approved this week the new budget proposal for 2024, which amounts to $30,690.4 million.

The new budget represents a reduction of $2,064.2 million compared to the initial proposal that was presented to the Assembly at the end of last July.

This decrease is attributed to changing economic conditions and the recent decision of the Supreme Court of Justice to declare the contract between the State and Minera Panamá unconstitutional.

The cut to the general budget of the State for the fiscal period 2024 contemplates the reduction of the payroll in the professional service line of 14.8% and the elimination of subsidies by 36%.

Expenditure oriented to the Education sector increases by $1,240.8 million, going from 5.5% to 7% of GDP (1.5% increase), as established by Law 362 of February 2, 2023, which allocates investments in the educational sector.

For its part, debt service grows by $1,100.4 million. Both increases are larger compared to the modified 2023 budget.

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