The Balearic government yesterday approved its budget for next year, for a total of 158'148 million pesetas, seven per cent more than this year. Details of the budget were announced by finance minister Joan Mesquida, who said that nearly half will go on education. Amenities, the environment, energy and social welfare will also have bigger slices of the budget. Mesquida said that 40 per cent of the budget will go on education, with more than 7'500 million pesetas available for building new schools. Education will also be free for children between the ages of three and six. The minister went on to explain that there was a 40 per cent increase in funding for innovation and technology, 25 per cent for social welfare, nearly 13 per cent for the environment and energy and 11 per cent for transport, amenities and housing. The budget does not include “substantial” changes in taxation, Mesquida said, stressing that fiscal pressure had not gone up. The government will have 1'218 million pesetas for international cooperation, which represents 0.77 per cent of the total budget.

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