Consolidated fund deficit slashed by €100 million in a year

Finance minister Edward Scicluna hails statistics as proof of consistent growth in recurrent revenue coupled with a more contained growth in expenditure

The government’s consolidated fund registered a €60.2 million deficit between January and November this year, a reduction of €100.7 million when compared to the same period in 2015.

Finance minister Edward Scicluna hailed the national statistics as proof of consistent growth in recurrent government revenue and a more contained growth in expenditure.

National statistics show that recurrent revenue increased by €150.4 million (4.8% higher than in 2015) while total expenditure increased by €49.6 million (1.5% higher than in 2015).

The increase in recurrent revenue was backed by higher revenue from income tax (€118.1 million) and social security (€59.9 million) which in turn reflected the affirmative performance of the labour market during this year. Other increases were registered in revenues from licences, taxes and fines, VAT and fees of office.

The increase in recurrent expenditure mainly reflected the increase in expenditure on programs and initiatives (€74.7 million) which mainly reflected added expenditure towards social security, health and education as well as the EU Presidency 2017. Other expenditure increases were recorded in contributions to Government entities, personal emoluments and operational and maintenance expenses.

“The increase in recurrent revenue for the eleven-month period was significant, despite a €75.8 million decline in grants reflecting the closure of the European Union financing period 2007-2013 at the end of last year,” Scicluna said in a statement. “Reductions in the EU grant component is being balanced by lower EU funded capital expenditure.

“This positive result indicates that by the end-of this year, the Government will have succeeded in reducing the fiscal burden on Maltese households by over €100 million”.

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