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General deficit up in fourth quarter of 2019

Finance Ministry says half of Estia scheme applications accepted.

The general government deficit rose by €104.4m year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2019 the statistical service said Wednesday.

On the basis of preliminary data, total revenue was around €2.5bn while total expenditure reached €2.8bn, resulting in a deficit of €277.4m, compared with €173m the precious year.

The main categories of revenue for the period between October and December 2019 were: taxes on production and imports €792.6m (2.5 per cent decrease compared with the fourth quarter of 2018), of which net VAT was €471.1m ( down 4.5 per cent, attributed to the payment of tax arrears to the government, from €188m in 2018 to €118m in 2019), taxes on income and wealth €581.8m (2.9 per cent increase), and social contributions €638.3m (25.6 per cent increase). Revenue from the sale of goods and services reached €330m, registering an increase of 33.3 per cent compared with the corresponding period of the previous year.

The main categories of expenditure for the period October-December 2019 were: social transfers €856.6m (up 8.4 per cent on 2018) and compensation of employees (including imputed social contributions and pensions of civil servants) €877.2m (10 per cent increase). The capital account recorded an expenditure of €234.1m (€204m investment and €30.1m capital transfers) compared with €305.5m in 2018 (€277.5m investment and €28.0m capital transfers) registering a decrease of 23.4 per cent. Intermediate consumption reached €476.8m (52.9 per cent increase).

Increased amounts in specific categories of revenue and expenditure are partly attributed to the implementation of the National Health System as of 01.03.2019.

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