ECONOMY

In Brief

Serb PM sees no liquidity, deficit problems in 2010 BELGRADE (Reuters) – Serbia is unlikely to face liquidity problems in 2010 as the government has secured enough money to finance the budget deficit, Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic said last week. Serbia’s parliament last Monday passed the 2010 budget envisaging the deficit of 107 billion dinars or 1.1 billion euros – equivalent to 4 percent of GDP. The economy is forecast to return to growth of 1.5 percent in 2010, while wages and pensions are set to remain frozen throughout the year, as required by a 3-billion-euro standby arrangement with the International Monetary Fund. «We will have no problem to finance the 2010 budget deficit,» Cvetkovic said in a late night interview on state television RTS. «Liquidity will not be an issue in 2010 as it was earlier this year.» Cvetkovic said his government, which formally applied for European Union membership this week, had secured loans for 2010 worth 200 million euros, in addition to a 50-million-euro grant from the European Union. Kosovo to build 400-KV power line for Albania link PRISTINA (Reuters) – Kosovo has received a grant and a loan from Germany to fund a 33.5-million-euro 400-kilovolt transmission line to link its power grid with that of neighboring Albania, Kosovo’s Economy and Finance Minister Ahmet Shala said last week. The transmission line up to Albania’s border will cost 33.5 million euros and is expected to be finished in three years, Shala said. The loan is the country’s first since it declared independence from Serbia in 2008. «Half of the 33.5 million euros will be as a grant from the government of Germany and the other half is a loan with very good terms,» said Shala after signing the deal with representatives from the German government and the German state development bank KfW, which which will provide the loan. Turk energy prices Turkey’s Energy Market Regulatory Authority said on Thursday it has approved a 1.32 percent rise in electricity prices for households and a 1.23 increase for industry to cover higher input costs. The price increases will go into effect on Friday, January 1. (Reuters) Pegasus IPO Turkey’s Pegasus Airlines is planning a mandate for an initial public offering on January 8 that will generate revenues for acquisitions and new plane orders, Ali Sabanci, the chairman of the company, said on Friday. The charter airline operates a fleet of 19 aircraft and flies to domestic as well as international destinations including in Germany, Greece, Austria, Denmark, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Britain. Sabanci said advisers for the public offering recommend the second half of 2010 or the first quarter of 2011. (Reuters) FYROM budget The parliament of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia on Thursday adopted a 2010 budget targeting a lower fiscal deficit that is expected to help the country emerge from the economic crisis and post modest growth next year. A 153-billion-denar (2.5-billion-euro) budget, almost 3 percent higher than 2009’s, envisages a fiscal gap of 2.5 percent of gross domestic product, down from 2.8 percent in 2009. (Reuters)