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Varga: Fiscal deficit, debt ratio below target for 2015

Telco

Hungaryʼs fiscal deficit came to approximately 2% of GDP last year and state debt was below 76% of GDP at the end of the year, while the government’s ESA deficit target was 2.4 of GDP and debt ratio was foreseen to be 76.2%, Hungary’s National Economy Minister Mihály Varga said today at a press conference, according to reports.

The cashflow-based deficit of the central government came to HUF 1.218 trillion, the minister said, adding that the ministry is scheduled to publish a first reading of the December and full-year figures later today, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

Although approximately HUF 600 billion in EU funding did not flow in before the end of last year, the cashflow gap is more than HUF 300 bln higher than the respective target of HUF 892.4 bln, Varga said, according to MTI.

The disbursement of EU funds was delayed as the European Commission temporarily suspended transfers between April and September, MTI cited Varga as saying. The delayed inflow and advance payments made to EU-funded projects by the central budget raised the cashflow deficit while it did not affect the accrual-based ESA deficit, MTI added.

Varga reportedly said that the general governmentʼs position was better than expected with higher growth raising tax revenues, and it is expected to exceed plans by HUF 550 bln, MTI reported. Gross wages rose 6.7% and consumer spending also rose last year, Varga noted, according to MTI.

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