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Government generates €482.1m surplus in 11 months

The government generated a fiscal surplus of €482.1m in the first eleven months of the year or 2.5 per cent of economic output, the statistical service said on Friday.

The surplus compares to €88.5m or 0.5 per cent of economic output for the same period in 2016.

The improved fiscal results were mainly on a 9.5 per cent annual increase in revenue to €6.5bn in January to November which outstripped a 3 per cent increase in spending to €6.1bn, Cystat said in a statement on its website.

Revenue from taxes on production and imports rose 13 per cent in January to November to €2.7bn compared to a year before, which included €1.6bn in value added tax (VAT) revenue which rose 15 per cent, Cystat said. Revenue from income and wealth tax went up 3.6 per cent to below €1.5bn and social contributions rose 11 per cent to over €1.5bn. Revenue from the sale of services rose 11 per cent to €474m and capital transfers almost doubled to €71.8m.

Current transfers and income from interest and dividends dropped an annual 8.1 per cent and 5.6 per cent to €172.8m and €108.7m respectively in the first eleven months of the year, Cystat added.

On the other hand, intermediary consumption and the government’s staff costs rose 11 per cent and 4.2 per cent to €576m and €2bn in the first eleven months of the year compared to the same period last year, Cystat said. Welfare expenditure and current transfers increased 1.3 per cent to €2.3bn and 9.6 per cent to €400.8m respectively.

The cost of servicing public debt rose an annual 5.2 per cent in January to November to €459.3m, while capital expenditure dropped 1 per cent to €285.4m, Cystat said. Subsidies and capital transfers fell to €33.1m from €68.1m and to €49.3m from €63.6m respectively.

The 2017 budget submitted by the government provided for a total of less than €7bn in revenue and expenditure slightly exceeding €7bn. Last year, the government generated a fiscal surplus of 0.5 per cent of the economy or €82.4m.



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