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First quarter fiscal outlook for SVG has improved

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The fiscal outlook for the country during the first quarter of the year has improved, compared with the corresponding period in 2012.{{more}}

Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Dr Ralph Gonsalves on Monday gave an update on the fiscal operations of central government up to March 31.

He said there was a 9.4 per cent increase in total revenue and grants.

According to Gonsalves, the figure for this year was $114.5 million, compared to $104.6 million last year.

The current revenue has remained basically the same, he said, at $101.1 million; last year’s figure was $100.9 million.

There was also an increase recorded in capital revenue and grants, with the figure reaching $13.4 million, compared to $3.7 million for the corresponding period in 2012.

Total expenditure, recurrent and capital, has increased: $118.5 million in 2013, compared to $112.7 million, last year.

Current expenditure went down slightly, going from $112 million in 2012 to $110.6 million in 2013 and capital expenditure went from $736,000 in 2012 to $7.9 million in 2013.

The current account balance deficit went down from $11 million in 2012 to $9.49 million this year and the overall deficit also decreased from $8.1 million to $4 million.

There was a recorded decline on taxes on individual and company taxes, moving from $24.5 million in 2012 to 24.2 million in 2013 and a decrease on taxes from international trade, moving from $38.4 million last year to $36.6 million this year.

Taxes collected from domestic transactions increased, however, moving from $24 million in 2012 to $25.9 million during the first quarter of this year.

Gonsalves announced that there was an increase in revenue collected from alien landholding licenses and said that personal emoluments for public servants have gone up by 3.4 per cent.

And while the debt servicing has gone down slightly, the Prime Minister announced that there was a 10.5 per cent increase in the wage bill and pensions have gone up by 15.5 per cent.

“I keep talking about pensions all the time and the need for us to have that sustainable,” Gonsalves said, adding that his government had introduced some reforms.

These measures are expected to take effect from January 2014. (DD)

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