Government breaches full-year fiscal deficit target at October-end

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New Delhi | November 30, 2018 7:15 PM

The fiscal deficit or gap between expenditure and revenue was Rs 6.48 lakh crore or 103.9 per cent of Budget Estimate (BE) during April-October of the current financial year.

The fiscal deficit or gap between expenditure and revenue was Rs 6.48 lakh crore or 103.9 per cent of Budget Estimate (BE) during April-October of the current financial year.

The full-year fiscal deficit target of Rs 6.24 lakh crore was breached at October-end mainly on account of lower revenue collections, showed government data Friday, reflecting deterioration in public finances. The fiscal deficit or gap between expenditure and revenue was Rs 6.48 lakh crore or 103.9 per cent of Budget Estimate (BE) during April-October of the current financial year.

At end of October 2017-18, the deficit was 96.1 per cent of the BE. The government has budgeted to cut fiscal deficit to 3.3 per cent of GDP in 2018-19 from 3.53 per cent in the previous financial year. According to the data released by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA), the revenue receipts of the government totalled Rs 7.88 lakh crore or 45.7 per cent of the BE for 2018-19 as compared to 48.1 per cent of BE last year. The government has budgeted to mop up Rs 17.25 lakh crore revenue during the current fiscal.

Tax revenue was 44.7 per cent of BE compared to 51.6 per cent achieved in the comparable period of the last year. As per the CGA data, the total expenditure of the government at October-end was Rs 14.56 lakh crore or 59.6 per cent of the BE. The expenditure in terms of percentage of the BE was marginally higher in the year-ago period.

“Fiscal deficit figure shown in monthly accounts during a financial year is not necessarily an indicator of fiscal deficit for the year as it gets impacted by temporal mismatch between flow of not-debt receipts and expenditure up to that month on account of various transitional factors both on receipt and expenditure side, which may get substantially offset by the end of the financial year,” CGA said.

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