IN spite of the contraction in the local economy, the Government has managed to grow its revenue collections above budget by $378.2 million for the period April to December 2020.
For the nine-month period, total revenues and grants coming into the Government’s coffers amounted to $398.26 billion, which was $378.2 million more than projected. This represented a decrease of approximately 15.1% relative to the $469.16 billion recorded for the corresponding period in 2019.
‘Non-tax revenue’ and ‘grants’ outperformed projections during the review period. Non-tax revenue amounted to $47.77 billion, which was $594.7 million more than budgeted, while grants amounted to $3.97 billion during the review period and outperformed the budget by $528.1 million.
Tax revenue of $346.49 billion was reported, which was $744.6 million less than budgeted. Notably, no budgeted amount was booked for ‘bauxite levy’. ‘Capital revenue’ closed the period with a provisional amount of $22.10 million, corresponding with the budgeted amount.
Total expenditure by the Government for the period April to December 2020 amounted to $468.51 billion, which was $3.61 billion less than the budgeted amount of $472.12 billion. Recurrent expenditure, which totalled $432.08 billion, accounted for 92.22 per cent of overall expenditures.
Of the recurrent expenditure categories for the review period the only category above the budgeted amount was ‘interest’, which totalled $87.79 billion – 1.7 per cent above the budgeted amount of $86.32 billion.
Relative to projections, ‘wages and salaries’ amounted to $155.74 billion and was $63.4 million less than budgeted, while ‘programmes’ totalled $177.49 billion. This was 1.4 per cent less than budgeted.
Additionally, ’employee contribution’ totalled $11.07 billion, which was 3.0 per cent less than the budgeted amount of $11.41 billion. ‘Fiscal deficit’, which is the shortfall in a Government’s income compared with its spending, was $70.25 billion relative to the projected deficit of $74.24 billion.
Additionally, the ‘primary surplus balance’ for the period amounted to $17.53 billion relative to the budgeted primary surplus of $12.08 million. The primary balance is when revenue is more than non-interest expenditure.
– Durrant Pate