Sri Lanka tax revenues up 19-pct up to July 2017
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s tax revenues rose 19 percent to 950.2 billion rupees in the seven months to July 2017, while the overall budget deficit was up 9 percent to 473.7 billion rupees, official data showed.
Current spending rose 13 percent to 1,136 billion rupees, allowing the current account deficit of the budget to fall in absolute terms to 9 percent 117.4 billion rupees.
Compared to estimated gross domestic product, the revenue deficit was .0.9 percent down from 1.2 percent last year. Sri Lana budgeted for an ambitious 0.8 percent revenue surplus in 2017, after achieving a 0.6 percent deficit in 2016.
Capital expenditure rose 23 percent in the first seven months to 356.3 billion rupees, expanding the overall deficit to 471.9 billion rupees after grants. It is 3.5 percent of estimated GDP, down from 3.66 percent last year.
The primary deficit, which is the total deficit before interest costs was only 3.4 billion rupees, with interest costs of 468 billion rupees, equal to the overall deficit, compared to a 62 billion rupee deficit last year.
The International Monetary Fund tracks the primary deficit as interest costs.
That means expense outside interest costs rose only 4.9 percent.
Revenues are growing slower than an ambitious 24 percent targeted in the budget, but faster than expenses, allowing total deficit to be contained. (Colombo/Oct24/2017)