Malta registers highest surplus in the European Union

At 3.5 per cent of GDP, Malta has exceeded the surplus reported by Germany and the Netherlands, both at 1.5 per cent.

20 July 2017, 4:38pm
Malta’s fiscal surplus of €44.2 million recorded for the first quarter of 2017 has now been termed by Eurostat as being the highest ratio within the EU.

At 3.5 per cent of GDP, Malta has exceeded the surplus reported by Germany and the Netherlands, both at 1.5 per cent.

The surplus for the first quarter accelerated the decline in the debt ratio.

Indeed, Malta recorded a decrease of 2.9 percentage points and was ranked the country with the fourth highest decrease in its debt-to-GDP ratio. As a result, in the last two quarters Malta’s debt fell below the 60 per cent threshold.

“The results confirm the Government’s resolve to continue operating within a positive fiscal balance for the foreseeable future,” Finance Minister Edward Scicluna said.

In the first quarter of 2017, the seasonally adjusted general government deficit to GDP ratio stood at 0.9% in the euro area (EA19), a decrease compared with 1.1% in the fourth quarter of 2016. In the EU28, the deficit to GDP ratio stood at 1.0%, a decrease compared with 1.2% in the previous quarter.

Government revenue and expenditure for the euro area and EU28

In the first quarter of 2017, total government revenue in the euro area amounted to 46.5% of GDP, an increase compared with 46.3% in the fourth quarter of 2016. Total government expenditure in the euro area stood at 47.4% of GDP, stable compared to the previous quarter.

In the EU28, total government revenue was 45.2% of GDP in the first quarter of 2017, compared with 45.1% in the fourth quarter of 2016. Total government expenditure in the EU28 was 46.2% of GDP, compared with 46.3% in the previous quarter.