The fiscal deficit target for 2017-18 may see only a slight slippage as the government has done well on disinvestment and non-tax revenue collections, NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar said today. The glide path to reduce fiscal deficit could change and government may settle for slightly higher fiscal deficit in 2018-19 as well, he said. The government aims to contain the fiscal deficit for 2017-18 to 3.2 per cent of the GDP, and 3 per cent in 2018-19. “There could be a (fiscal deficit) slippage (in 2017-18) but not much, I can’t see it slipping very much because government has done lot on disinvestment front and on non tax revenue front,” Kumar told CNBC TV18. “The glide path could change. Therefore we might expect slightly higher fiscal deficit target for 2018-19 as well,” he added. Kumar also said tax revenue will be buoyant going forward.
“On the oil prices front, I am afraid, we will have to take the pain. Listing of a very large oil company may be one of the reasons of high oil prices. Also, government is working to reduce our dependence on petroleum product,” he noted. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is scheduled to present the Union Budget for 2018-19 on February 1, which will reveal the final numbers.