Economic growth and consequently increased employment, the continuation of fiscal consolidation and activation of 'dormant' capital will be the pillars of fiscal policies in the coming period with special emphasis on an overall tax reform, Finance Minister Zdravko Maric said on Friday, but he stopped short of specifying tax reforms.

He reiterated that the proposed tax reform is almost completed and that "it is necessary to fine-tune certain final details at the political level and to go through certain public debate," and all these are essential preconditions to inaugurate parliament today and in the days to follow with the appointment of a new government.

"There is not a lot of time. From the start, I have said that I will strongly advocate the approach that amendments to tax legislation be applied as of the start of next year. I am not in favour for tax changes during the year but we will see what the days to come will bring. From the perspective of the finance ministry and all those who worked on the tax reforms, we will do our bit and then we will see what the next steps will be," Maric said.

He denied speculation regarding certain segments of the taxation system, saying that no-one except those people who actually worked on them know the details.

He added that analysis has shown that the current taxation system is extremely complex, complicated and confusing and the first and basic reform is to simplify it, raise its transparency and finally improve its efficiency.

Maric added that he remained of the attitude that what was most important in fiscal policies is to control the expenditure side of the budget, to use all surplus to reduce the deficit and debt and then to create preconditions for tax reliefs.

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