Italy's Govt Removes State Subsidies for Political Parties as of 2017
Italy's government has adopted a decree law envisaging the removal of state subsidies for political parties as of 2017.
As of 2017, political parties will be funded by contributions from citizens, according to reports of Bulgarian daily Sega.
The bill was to be adopted by Parliament but it was delayed.
The bill was only approved by the Chamber of Deputies but not by the Senate, which was why the government took advantage of the opportunity to adopt a decree law taking effect immediately.
In order to remain in force, the law has to be upheld by the Senate.
Until now, the amount of money granted to political parties depended on their election results.
Under the provisions adopted on Friday, political formations in Italy will receive 60% of their allocations in 2014, which will drop to 50% in 2015, 40% in 2016, and 0% in 2017.
In July 2012, the previous government of Prime Minister Mario Monti reduced by half the total amount of public funding for political parties, from a rate of EUR 182 M to EUR 91 M in 2013.
The political parties will be funded by voluntary donations of citizens.
Italian MPs set a limit to these donations of EUR 200 000 a year for companies and EUR 300 000 for natural persons.
On December 9, Bulgaria's Parliament approved a reduction of the annual amount of the state subsidy for political parties to BGN 11 per vote in 2014.
The reduction by BGN 1, or 8.33%, was approved during the second reading of amendments to the State Budget Act.
The subsidy cut is expected to result in savings of around BGN 4 M, according to reports of dnevnik.bg.
After the parliamentary elections on May 12, a total of 10 parties passed the 1% threshold and qualified for state subsidies – center-right party GERB (Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria), the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), liberal party Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), nationalist party Ataka and the extra-parliamentary nationalist parties National Front for the Salvation of Bulgaria (NFSB) and VMRO, the Bulgaria for Citizens Movement of former EU Commissioner Meglena Kuneva, liberal party LIDER, marginal conservative party Order, Law and Justice (RZS) of Yane Yanev and the People's Voice of party of rock musician Svetoslav Vitkov.
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