New Slovak anti-inflation package sails through parliament with far-right help

Critics view the package as expensive and very narrowly targeted since it focuses mainly on families with children. Some members of the coalition Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) party, which refused to back the proposal in the National Council, say that it may raise inflation.  [Shutterstock/Ventura]

The new anti-inflation package worth €1 billion proposed by the ruling OL’aNo party was adopted by the National Council on Wednesday with the help of far-right deputies after part of the ruling coalition refused to back the bill.

The package, proposed by former Prime Minister and current Finance Minister Igor Matovič, has drawn a lot of controversy in recent days.

Critics view the package as expensive and very narrowly targeted since it focuses mainly on families with children. Some members of the coalition Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) party, which refused to back the proposal in the National Council, say that it may raise inflation.

“It has a lot of mistakes, it goes the wrong way, it will increase inflation and put a strain on public finances,” said Marián Viskupič from SaS. Justice Minister Mária Kolíková (SaS) said she is considering submitting the proposal to the Constitutional Court for review.

Measures include a one-time subsidy of €100 for every child, increased tax bonuses for families with children and an increased child allowance. The whole package will cost approximately €1.2 billion next year, and Matovič is yet to explain how it will be financed.

The bill has also been criticised for the way it has been approved. Because SaS refused to back the proposal, Matovič looked for opposition support among the ranks of the far-right People’s Party Our Slovakia (ĽSNS) to pass the bill. “It is disgusting,” said Kolíková.

However, the legislation still needs to be penned by President Zuzana Čaputová.

Asked by EURACTIV.sk, the European Commission said it had no comments on the bill.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Subscribe