The government’s consolidated fund reported a deficit of €359 million by the end of August.

In the same period a year earlier, this stood at €749 million.

The large reduction suggests that with four months of the year to go, the government is on-track to achieve its Budget 2022 aim of halving the national deficit this year.

According to data released by the National Statistics Office on Friday, recurrent revenue in the first eight months of 2022 amounted to €3.62 billion - a 12% increase over the €3.24 billion reported a year earlier.

The largest increase was recorded under value added tax (€177.7 million), followed by income tax (€126.9 million), and social security (€80.9 million).

By the end of August, total expenditure stood at €3.98 billion, €1.3 million lower than the previous year. 

During the reference period, recurrent expenditure totalled €3.52 billion, an increase of €39.7 million in comparison to the €3.48 billion reported in the first eight months of 2021.

The main contributor to this increase was a €38.4 million increase reported under programmes and initiatives.

The interest component of the public debt servicing costs totalled €112.4 million, a decrease of €10.7 million when compared to the previous year. 

By the end of August, government’s capital spending amounted to €352.8 million, €30.3 million lower than 2021. 

The difference between total revenue and expenditure resulted in a deficit of €359 million being reported in the government’s consolidated fund at the end of August.

Compared to the same period in 2021, there was a decrease in deficit of €390.1 million. This difference mirrors an increase in total recurrent revenue (€388.8 million), coupled with a decrease in total expenditure. 

At the end of August, central government debt stood at €8,559 million, an increase of €874.5 million from 2021. The increase reported under Malta Government Stocks (€657.2 million) was the main contributor to the rise in debt. Higher debt was also reported under treasury bills (€163.5 million), the 62+ Malta Government Savings Bond (€93.3 million) and euro coins issued in the name of the Treasury (€5.7 million).

This increase in debt was partially offset by a decrease in foreign Loans (€0.1 million). Higher holdings by government funds in Malta Government Stocks resulted in a decrease in debt of €45.1 million.

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