The Adventist Review shares the following world news from Religion News Service as a service to readers. Opinions expressed in these reports do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Review or the Seventh-day Adventist Church. -- Editors

European Austerity Measures
Reach the Vatican Budget


BY ALESSANDRO SPECIALE                                                                  ©2012 Religion News Service

The Vatican must adopt "effective" cost reduction measures in the wake of the global economic crisis, Pope Benedict XVI's No. 2 official warned on December 18.

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican's Secretary of State, told employees of the Holy See's budget department that, in the face of "continuing inability to increase revenues," a "gradual, but effective, reduction of costs" was needed to reduce recent budget deficits.

In 2011, the Holy See posted its highest loss in more than a decade, with a negative balance of $19 million (15 million euros), blaming it on the "negative trend of global financial markets."

The loss was compounded by a marked increase in expenses, which jumped by $37 million (28 million euros), while revenues registered only a slight increase.

In recent years, European countries have been forced to adopt drastic austerity measures in the face of a sluggish economic growth and rising debt. The Vatican, too, has been forced to walk down the same path.

This year's nativity scene in St. Peter's Square, which will be unveiled on Christmas Eve, cost around $160,000 in total, with only $29,000 paid by the Vatican itself and the rest covered by the Italian region of Basilicata.

This is a drastic savings compared to past years. Documents that came to light during the Vatileaks affair showed that, in 2009, the Vatican spent $730,000 for the St. Peter's creche.

The Vatican budget office, known as the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs, has been given vast new powers to oversee and control expenses in all Vatican departments and institutions. The new rules came into force last February but will be officially unveiled to the press on December 20.

The Prefecture's head, Italian Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, said that "substantial improvements" in the Vatican's ability to raise money are not foreseeable in the near future. "The only solution is to reduce costs by planning a rationalization and optimization of current resources," he said.
 
 
 

 

Copyright © 2017, Adventist Review. All rights reserved worldwide. Online Editor: Carlos Medley.
SiteMap. Powered by SimpleUpdates.com © 2002-2017. User Login / Customize.