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Funding for demographic measures may be found by freezing Liepaja prison project

Publicity photo.
Latvian Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis and Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola propose freezing Liepaja prison project and diverting this project’s funding for measures intended to resolve demographic problems.

On Wednesday, 6 September, journalists asked Kucinskis after his meeting with social partners about the possibility of putting off Liepaja prison construction project in favour of diverting funding to measures aimed at resolving demographic problems. Kucinskis said different options were discussed. He admitted that one possible solution was putting off some investment project. «I am open to discussions,» said the prime minister.

Reizniece-Ozola mentioned that she would support the idea regarding the halt of Liepaja prison construction project. «If we were to choose between supporting families or paying double for construction of a prison, I would support such an idea,» said Reizniece-Ozola.

The president of Latvian Employers’ Confederation said after his meeting with the prime minister that the government should stick to its previously approved plan, which mentions demographic measures as a priority. Nevertheless, he added that a more detailed funding plan is also needed.

«The government’s plan provides that the Cabinet of Ministers, social partners and other experts have to work on a special programme to support families. A programme has been developed. It will soon be reviewed by the government. The next step should be the development of a funding model. There should be clarity about the funding for the programme’s realization – the same way it was with funding for healthcare,» said LDDK president.

As it is known, coalition partners failed to reach an agreement on the next year’s budget last week because the National Alliance requested EUR 85 million for demographic measures. The established fiscal space, however, is only EUR 80 million. Reizniece-Ozola had previously said that it may be possible to allocate EUR 12 million for demographic measures next year.


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