The Malta Independent 23 June 2024, Sunday
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Government records €6.5 million deficit in third quarter 2015, Scicluna lauds results

Wednesday, 13 January 2016, 15:32 Last update: about 9 years ago

In the third quarter of 2015, the general government recorded a deficit of €6.5 million, the NSO said today.

During the period July-September 2015, total revenue stood at €879.3 million, an increase of €88.5 million when compared to the third quarter of 2014. This increase in revenue was mainly triggered by higher proceeds from Current taxes on income and wealth (€42.7 million) and receipts from Market output (€37.3 million). Moreover, Net social contributions receivable and Taxes on production and imports also registered increases whereas income from Current transfers and Capital transfers recorded a decline.

Total expenditure in the third quarter amounted to €885.8 million. The largest increases were recorded in Gross capital formation (€20.9 million), social benefits and social transfers in kind (€19.8 million) and Compensation of employees (€16.7 million). In addition, Intermediate consumption, Subsidies payable and Capital transfers payable also registered increases. Conversely, the major decline was recorded in Current transfers by €16.3 million.

In order to achieve compliance with the provisions of ESA 2010, adjustments to the Consolidated Fund data were made. In the third quarter last year, these adjustments resulted in an increase of €2.8 million to the deficit of the Consolidated Fund.

During the third quarter, in relation to financial transactions in assets, Currency and deposits were registered at €58.5 million. Moreover, Other accounts receivable stood at -€53.9 million, down from €77.1 million in the second quarter of 2015. Additionally, Long-term loans and Equity and investment fund shares fell to €0.3 million and €0.1 million respectively.

With regard to financial transactions in liabilities, Short-term debt securities recorded the largest amount of transactions at €22.1 million. Concurrently, Long-term loans and Currency and deposits both witnessed positive transaction amounts of €2.5 million, whereas Other accounts payable and Short-term loans were registered at €1.7 million and €0.1 million respectively. Conversely, Long-term debt securities recorded a negative transaction value of €5.3 million.

Total general government debt outstanding at the end of September increased by €55.3 million over 2014. General government debt amounted to €5,687.7 million, of which €5,683.4 million related to central government. The increase in central government debt was underpinned by higher Long-term debt securities of €119.0 million. Conversely, Short-term debt securities, Long-term loans and Short-term loans declined by €56.0 million, €11.5 million and €2.3 million respectively. The euro coins issued in the name of the Treasury, which are considered as a currency liability pertaining to the Central government, amounted to €65.4 million, a rise of €5.9 million over the euro coin stock recorded at the end of September 2014. In addition, the Local Government debt stood at €4.2 million.

The government guaranteed debt amounted to €1,345.5 million at the end of September

2015, an increase of €47.7 million when compared to September 2014.


Lowest Third Quarter General Government Deficit on Record

In a statement the Finance Ministry said: "The third quarter of 2015 has recorded the lowest third quarter deficit since data on the General Government Deficit started being compiled, the latest figures on the Quarterly Accounts for General Government published by the National Statistics Office (NSO) today show. The General Government deficit for July-September 2015 stood at €6.5 million, down from the €41.5 million of the same quarter in 2014."

Finance Minister Edward Scicluna said: “These positive fiscal figures continue to confirm that this Government is succeeding in putting our public finances on a sustainable path by gradually but consistently reducing the deficit while fostering economic growth.”

The ministry said the significant reduction in the deficit was mainly driven by a notable increase in revenuewhich grew by €88.5 million during the same period. Revenue from current taxes on income and wealth was the main factor behind this revenue increase, reflecting the record increases in employment as well as higher labour market participation of women and older workers. Higher proceeds were also recorded in other revenue components including market output, net social contributions and production and imports, the latter reflecting the positive effect of higher economic growth on Government revenue.

Total expenditure also increased during the same quarter, the main contributor being expenditure on investment, mainly EU-funded, which rose by €20.9 million. This represents a 32.2 per cent increase in investment spending over the third quarter of 2014. 

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