The government has limited fiscal deficit for 2014-15 at 4% of GDP, lower than the revised estimate of 4.1% announced in February helped by lower than estimated revenue deficit and by limiting both plan and non-plan spending for the just concluded fiscal, according to latest figures released by the finance ministry.
A statement from the finance ministry attributed the improvement in key fiscal indicators to the “result of prudent policies and (the government’s) commitment to fiscal consolidation.”
In his 2015-16 budget speech, finance minister Arun Jaitley had deferred the fiscal consolidation roadmap by a year and kept the target for 2015-16 at 3.9% of GDP compared to the earlier target of 3.6%.
The fiscal deficit at the end of 2014-15 stood at Rs. 5,01,880 crore which is 98% of the projected revised estimate for the fiscal. The gap between the government’s receipts and spending, which is usually met by borrowings, had been at 4.4% for 2013-14. “The Union Government is firmly committed to path of fiscal consolidation and this is a step forward,” said the statement.
Plan Expenditure at the end of 2014-15 stood at Rs.4.35 lakh crore, down from the revised estimate of Rs 4.67 lakh crore. The final plan spending figure shows a 24% cut from the original budget estimate of Rs 5.75 lakh crore. It was revised down in February by 18.6%.
Non-Plan Expenditure for the fiscal ended March 31, 2015 stood at Rs 11.91 lakh crore or 99.8% of the revised estimate at Rs 12.13 lakh crore.
The ministry said the provisional account for the fiscal year ended 31st March, 2015 has been compiled on the basis of March data as well as anticipated adjustments received from the different ministries, which might undergo certain changes during the final compilation after audit.
Revenue deficit at the end of 2014-15 stood at Rs.3,58,306 crore, which accounted for 2.8% of the GDP as against the revised estimate for the year of 2.9%. Revenue deficit for the 2013-14 fiscal had stood at 3.2%.
Gross tax collection for the year under review stood at Rs. 12.45 lakh crore, showing a growth of 9% from a year ago. Gross tax receipts accounted for 9.8% of GDP last fiscal. Non Tax Revenue, however, stood at Rs.1.97 lakh crore, accounting for 90% of the revised estimates.
Devolution of tax collections to States at the end of 2014-15 remained at Rs.3.38 lakh crore, higher by Rs.19,578 crore over the same for 2013-14.
Non Debt Capital Receipts, which includes disinvestment exceeded the revised estimate (103% of RE) at Rs.43,439 crore. This showed an increase of 4% compared to that of the previous year.