Categorized | Featured, National News


DPM Turnquest

Initial statistics for the first nine-months of fiscal year 2018/201919 denoted a 51 per centimprovement on the deficit reduction compared to the previous fiscal year. 

This comes  from the Ministry of Finance’s nine-month budget performance report, which explained that these figures shrunk from $261.5m in last fiscal year to $129.2m this year.

The report noted that revenue increased by $218.7m, which represented a 15 per cent Year Over Yearimprovement. 

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest said in a news release that the country’s fiscal performance is “steadily moving towards closing the deficit gap. However the government must maintain expenditure discipline to ultimately meet its year end target.”

The 17-page report also highlighted that “expenditures for the review period increased by $86.5m or 5 per cent accounted for by a $143.3m increase in recurrent expenditure and a $56.8m decrease in capital expenditure increased businesslicense revenue flows.”

To this, the Finance Minister said that business license performance not only “met the government’s expectations for the customary third quarter boost, but it is noteworthy that business license revenue was up by 35 per cent.”

This, he said, further proves that the economy is strengthening and expanding, and overall business receipts are improving. 

He added, “this also reflects the fact that the Department of Inland Revenue has seen an uptick inthe number of businesses being regularized and in the number of new registrants.”

The report also mentioned that Value Added Tax (VAT) collections during the third quarter were said to have helped fuel a turnaround from a $7m deficit from last fiscal year’s third quarter compared to a$40m surplus in the third quarter this year.

The Ministry noted that the transition from VAT on realty transactions to stamp tax on realty transactions led to “an approximate two fold increase in the yield from $80.6m a year ago to $161.6m in this fiscalperiod.”

It added, Non-tax revenues, which totaled $167.3 million also surpassed the third-quarter budget mark with a gain of $20.7m compared to the last review period. Immigration fees were also said to be higher by $20.9 million or 44 per cent due to the recent fee increases.”

This was said to be 89.3 per cent  of the budget target. 

The Ministry of Finance also said that expenditures for the review period increased by $86.5m or 5 per cent. 

It added that the bulk of the comparatively higher growth reflect increases in “expenditure on rents, utilities and the purchase of goods and services, as well as the settlement of budgeted arrears.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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