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Treasury: state budget implementation at 1 per cent in January

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The Treasury on Wednesday announced that the rate of implementation of the development costs of the state budget in January 2024 stands at 1 per cent, equivalent to €17.86 million, remaining consistent with the average of the last decade.

Furthermore, when considering the implementation concerning the revenues, it stands at the same levels as last January, at 8 per cent.

However, it exhibited a decline in relation to spending, at 4 per cent, a decrease from the 6 per cent seen in January 2023.

In an announcement titled “Implementation of the State Budget January 2024,” the Treasury said that by the end of January 2024, the total revenues amounted to €0.88 billion, corresponding to 8 per cent of the state budget.

This figure aligns with the previous year’s figure, where 2023 saw €0.8bn, also representing 8 per cent. Moreover, actual expenditure amounted to €0.55bn, marking an implementation rate of 4 per cent, a decrease from €0.78bn or 6 per cent in 2023.

It is noteworthy that the implementation of the state budget with revenues maintained the same levels as in the corresponding period last year, both years marking 8 per cent.

Conversely, it shows a decrease in relation to expenditures, moving from 6 per cent in 2023 to 4 per cent in 2024.

The Treasury highlighted that the reduced implementation relative to expenditure is primarily attributable to reduced outflows for the repayment of loans and interest, with 2024 seeing €0.05bn, a significant reduction from €0.28bn in 2023.

Delving into more detail regarding the implementation in relation to revenues, the announcement revealed a decrease in indirect taxes in January 2024 by €0.01bn or 5 per cent compared to 2023.

This reduction is mainly due to the decrease in revenues from VAT, which dropped by €0.02bn, moving from €0.26bn in 2023 to €0.24bn in 2024.

Conversely, direct taxes saw an increase of €0.12bn or 28 per cent compared to 2023, predominantly due to Corporate and Individual Income Tax, which rose from €0.40bn in 2023 to €0.51bn in 2024.

Significantly, there were no borrowings by the end of January, a trend consistent across both 2024 and 2023.

When examining the implementation of the state budget concerning expenditure, there’s an observable increase in payroll, pensions, and gratuities by 9 per cent or €0.02bn, moving from €0.23bn in 2023 to €0.25bn in 2024.

Loan and interest repayments amounted to €0.05bn in 2024, with €0.04bn relating to loan interest and charges, and the remaining €0.01bn to the repayment of domestic loans, a sharp decline from the €0.28bn in 2023, of which €0.05bn was for interest and charges and €0.23bn for domestic loan repayments.

Additionally, spending on social benefits for January 2024 amounted to €0.08bn, remaining at the same level as last year’s corresponding period.

In terms of development expenditure, the implementation of capital expenditure for January 2024 amounted to €5.9m, according to the general assembly.

This expenditure is mainly attributed to the road network, with €3.4m, and the expenses for construction, expansion, and improvements of school buildings, which accounted for €1.9m.

The implementation for co-financed and other financial expenses for January 2024 amounted to €3.2m and is mainly due to the Tuition and Feeding Grant Scheme for Children up to 4 years of age, which accounted for €1.6m.

It also includes the Grant Scheme for Strengthening the Competitiveness of Small and Medium Enterprises at €0.3m, the Plan to Save – Upgrade Homes at €0.2m, and the Incentives for Employment of the Unemployed at €0.2m.

Furthermore, according to the Treasury, the implementation of sponsorships, contributions, and grants amounted to €7m until the end of January 2024.

This is mainly due to the sponsorships to semi-state organisations, which accounted for €4.6m, and the state’s contribution to the European Peace Facility at €1.1m, the European Investment Bank at €0.6m, and the European Development Fund at €0.1m.

Lastly, the implementation of social benefits until the end of January 2024 amounted to €1.1m and is mainly due to the sponsorships to Voluntary Organisations, which accounted for €0.7m, and the expenses for Cultural benefits, amounting to €0.4m.

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