Despite the unfavorable situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and pandemic restrictions in 2020-2021, we were able to hold the fourth edition of the Economics Olympiad, the first comprehensive nationwide competition in economics and finance for high school students in Slovakia. What is more, we were happy to welcome a record number of high school students from all over the country to take part in the competition this year.
People will stick with cigarettes, which, although more harmful than the alternative, will bring more taxes into the state coffers. After three years, tobacco tax increases are back on the table. In English, it is known as the “sin tax”. Similar to the tax on alcohol or beer. The public perceives these taxes as a way for consumers of addictive substances to ‘pay’ for their sins. The truth is that smokers pay a lot.
The cost of emissions reductions over the last two decades in the EU has been significant. In Slovakia alone, people pay hundreds of millions of euros a year to support renewable energy sources, with millions more going on insulation and boiler subsidies, or the development of electromobility. A significant part of the cost is hidden in higher prices for goods, as manufacturers have to buy emission allowances.
If we want to start talking about next year’s minimum wage increase, we first need to look to the past. As we all know, 2020 was the year of the pandemic, and that brought with it, among other things, a significant downturn in the economy, and with it a fall in labor productivity. The private sector responded logically by reducing the growth in average wages. But not all businesses had this option.
The European Commission has presented a proposal for The Digital Markets Act (DMA). Its goal is to create fair and competitive digital markets in the EU. It aims to achieve this by introducing new ex ante regulations that will automatically apply to so-called “gatekeepers”. The gatekeepers are to be large internet platforms that meet selected size criteria.
After many years, the last year’s organization of the traditional international conference Free Market Roadshow, which has been organized by INESS in cooperation with AEC was cancelled due to the pandemic. This year, it was brought back – into the online space – and dedicated to the topic which has been perhaps the most pertinent for the last year and for many years to come: Pandemic Lessons.
The Slovak Minister of Finance claims a tax and contribution burden on self-employed people should be increased in order to be “fair“ in comparison to employees. Why can’t we put a sign of equality between these two statuses? Why doesn’t the term “fair“ make sense?
Some respected economists identified the issue of consolidation in public budget already in 2022 as a third-order problem. From an analytical point of view, he is, of course, right. A one-year deficit of 10% of GDP is nothing compared to a permanent two to five per cent deficit in the pension system with a declining workforce.
Sci-fi? Such an idea has no unrealistic basis. This biological nature of members of different cultures related to the ability to prosper is the same. One of the practical examples is the USA, which cannot refer to the race or the religion as a factor of its prosperity.