President Klaus signs bill on state budget for 2011
President Václav Klaus on Thursday signed into law the state budget for 2011 with a deficit of 135 billion crowns, or nearly seven billion US dollars. That amounts to 4.6 percent of the country’s GDP. The budget gap is some 30 billion crowns lower than that of 2010 but is still the third biggest deficit in the country’s history. The Czech Parliament has approved a series of austerity measures aimed at lowering next year’s deficit, including cuts in social welfare, reduced support for building savings, limited subsidies to political parties and a higher income tax.