NATIONAL GOVT REGISTERS P16.1-BILLION PRIMARY SURPLUS IN JANUARY
MANILA, MARCH 22, 2008 (BULLETIN) Lee C. Chipongian - The National Government continues to post primary surplus of P16.1 billion, 523.3 percent higher than the P2.6 billion recorded the same period in 2007.
Primary surplus is the budget surplus net of interest payments on government debts.
Department of Finance’s unit Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) computed the first month surplus based on total revenues of P87 billion and expenditures net of interest payments of P70.9 billion. For January the agency said interest payments totalled P30 billion, seven percent lower compared to P32.3 billion (January 2007).
In a report to the DoF, the BTr said the final NG primary surplus for the full year 2007 is P255.4 billion, P15.1 billion more than what was programmed for the year of P240.3 billion. The current surplus is also 4.1 percent higher than 2006’s P245.3 billion.
The 2007 primary surplus was calculated based on the revenues collected of P1.136 trillion and expenditures net of interest payments of P881.2 billion. The revenues were actually higher than program or by P17.8 billion while total government spending for the whole year was about P2.7 billion more than program of P878.5 billion.
In the meantime the total interest payments were P267.8 billion last year, P35.5 billion lower than program of P303.3 billion. The DoF also revised the 2007 deficit to P12.4 billion from the P9.4 billion announced in February.
For the month of January the NG reported a lower budget deficit of P13.9 billion from P29.7 billion during the same period in 2006. For this month total disbursements amounted to P100.9 billion, 1.4 percent lower than 2006’s.
The DoF calculates primary surplus based on actual interest expense and if lower, the primary surplus becomes higher. Most credit rating agencies look on a country’s primary surplus to gage its ability to reduce national debt.
Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
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