Govt posts P21.9-B fiscal surplus in August

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The national government posted a fiscal surplus of P21.9 billion in August 2013, surpassing the target for the month, according to the data released by the Department of Finance (DOF) on Tuesday.

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The data showed that August surplus was 8 percent above the P20.3-billion target for the month and eightfold the P2.5-billion surplus recorded a year ago.

Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima said that the August surplus was achieved despite nearly “on-target” spending, signaling the government’s success at sustaining fiscal strength.

“The above-target surplus is highly encouraging, given that the government came very close to hitting its spending target in August. As other economies in Asia are resorting to aggressive revenue measures, we have proven that good governance has had a dramatic effect in restoring stability to the coffers of the government,” Purisima stated.

Meanwhile, the DOF data showed that year-to-date overall fiscal deficit stands at P82.6 billion, in line with government projections.

In terms of revenues, the agency noted that the bureaus of Internal Revenue (BIR), Customs (BOC) and the Treasury (BTr) all achieved double-digit growth for the month of August compared to the previous year.

Revenue collections in August reached P155.1 billion, 20 percent or P25.7 billion higher compared to the same period last year.

BIR collections were recorded at P118.1 billion reflecting a 22-percent year-on-year revenue growth, BoC posted P118.1 billion revenues, or a 15-percent increase.

Revenue from other offices grew 7 percent from a year ago to P7.5 billion, while BTr income rose 15 percent year-on-year to P3.4 billion.

On the other hand, the data added that revenue collections from January to August accumulated to P1.139 trillion.

Actual collections for the first eight months of the year were recorded at P811.9 billion for BIR and P198.9 billion for BOC, growing 16 percent and 4 percent, respectively, on a year-on-year basis.

BTr income totaled P60.9 billion and other offices contributed P67.5 billion. Total tax revenues amounted to P145.7 billion, representing 94 percent of total revenues while the remaining P9.4 billion came from nontax sources.

Disbursements
The data also showed that actual disbursements for August amounted to P133.2 billion, reflecting a 5 percent, or P6.4-billion increase, year-on-year.

Interest payments amounting to P18.2 billion accounted for 14 percent of total expenditures for the month.

Total disbursements for January to August reached P1.221 trillion, 13 percent higher than comparable disbursements in 2012.

Netting out interest payments as a part of expenditures, the national government recorded a primary surplus of P40.1 billion in August and P146.3 billion within the first eight months of the year.

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