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'Show your workings': DF and opposition to government over budget

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'Show your workings': DF and opposition to government over budget
Finance Minister Kristian Jensen. Mads Claus Rasmussen/Scanpix
13:42 CEST+02:00
Opposition parties as well as government ally the Danish People's Party (DF) have criticised the government for a lack of detail in its proposed budget.

Five of the 15 million kroner the government plans to spend reducing tax is not specifically financed in the budget proposal released last month, according to an open letter co-signed by opposition parties and sent to Finance Minister Kristian Jensen last week.

In the letter, the signatories demand a detailed costing of the budget in order for “the political debate to take place on an objective basis.”

The parties called the lack of specific details for financing of the budget's tax cuts “highly criticisable and a mark of poor government practice”.

René Christensen, DF's spokesperson for finance, told news agency Ritzau that he could “easily understand the opposition and no less the astonished general public”.

“The government is very specific about how it wants to use the money, but unspecific about where the money will come from,” he said.

The areas in which money will be saved – child support payments, charging for Danish language lessons and adjustment of social welfare – are mentioned only in headlines, writes Ritzau.

READ ALSO: Denmark's government announces new tax plan

“It is not typical for a government – that has an entire apparatus behind it – to present a proposal that is unfinanced,” Christensen said.

In its letter to the government, the opposition wrote that pensioners, students and Danes receiving social welfare would now be living in fear of being affected by the government's budget.

Christensen told Ritzau he agreed with the concerns of those parties.

“I recognise [the concerns] completely. And we politicians cannot discuss a proposal if we do not know where the money is coming from,” he said.

The spokesperson added that his party did not wish to cut welfare, but rather to implement accrual requirements to certain types of welfare in order to “protect” them.

READ ALSO: Cut foreigners' dental treatment, study grants and bus passes: DF

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