A deficit of €316.3 million has been recorded in the third quarter of 2020, the National Statistics Office said.

The NSO said that between July and September, total revenue stood at €1,116.8 million, a decrease of €92.5 million when compared to the same quarter in 2019.

Decreases in revenue were primarily due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the largest being taxes on production and imports (€86.7 million), followed by market output (€13.5 million), current transfers receivable (€7.7 million) and current taxes on income and wealth (€6.3 million).

These were partially off set by increases in capital transfers receivable (€15.2 million), net social contributions (€5.1 million) and property income receivable (€1.4 million).

Total expenditure in the third quarter amounted to €1,433.1 million, an increase of €261.6 million over the corresponding quarter in 2019.

Increases in expenditure were recorded in subsidies payable (€137.5 million), mostly in relation to the COVID-19 business assistance programme amounting to €92.8 million, intermediate consumption (€68.8 million), gross capital formation (€30.6 million), compensation of employees (€22.9 million), social benefi ts and social transfers in kind (€14.8 million) and capital transfers payable (€5.4 million).

In contrast, when compared to the corresponding quarter in 2019, current transfers payable and property income payable registered a decrease of €15.4 million and €3 million, respectively. 

To achieve compliance with the provisions of ESA 2010, adjustments to the consolidated fund data were made.

In the third quarter of 2020, these adjustments brought about an increase of €73 million to the consolidated fund deficit. 

Quarterly financial accounts

In relation to financial transactions in assets, during the third quarter, currency and deposits and long-term loans registered a decrease of €36.9 million and €19.7 million respectively, followed by other accounts receivable (€8.8 million) and short-term loans (€1.6 million).

Conversely, long-term debt securities and equity and investment fund shares increased by €2.1 million and €0.7 million, respectively.

Considering the financial transactions in liabilities, the highest increase was recorded in long-term debt securities (€212.1 million), followed by other accounts payable (€101.7 million) and currency and deposits (€93.7 million).

On the other hand, decreases were recorded in short-term debt securities (€96.9 million), long-term loans (€6.1 million) and short-term loans (€2.9 million).

Quarterly debt 

At the end of September, general government debt stood at €6,838.8 million, an increase of €1,192.9 million over the corresponding quarter in 2019.

The debt-to-GDP ratio stood at 53.7% of GDP1. This increase was largely reflected in central government debt, which amounted to €6,835.6 million.

Currency and deposits stood at €472.4 million, an increase of €93.7 million over September 2019.

This includes the euro coins issued in the name of the Treasury, considered a liability of central government, and the 62+ Malta Government Savings Bond, the latter amounting to €382 million.

Short- and long-term debt securities increased by €420.7 million and €682.4 million, respectively. Additionally, long-term loans registered an increase of €3.6 million, while short-term loans decreased by €7.5 million.

Local government debt stood at €3.3 million. General government guaranteed debt amounted to €1,108.8 million at the end of September 2020, equivalent to 8.7% of GDP1. Compared to the third quarter in 2019, there was an increase of €39 million.

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