The government has run a TL 1.4 billion ($533 million) surplus for the first two months of 2015, the Finance Ministry reported yesterday. There was a budget deficit of TL 2.4 billion in February and a TL 3.8 billion surplus in January. "Seasonal factors led to high expenses in February," Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek said in the statement. But there was a primary surplus of TL 4.53 billion in February, the statement added. A primary surplus is calculated without interest payments. "The accumulation of interest payments and infrastructure investment in the month of February were effective for the deficit," Şimşek said, adding, "On the other hand, despite fluctuations in the financial market in 2015 and a relative slowdown in domestic demand, revenue performance has remained strong." According to the ministry, government budget revenues hit TL 80.3 billion in the first two months of 2015, an 11 percent increase compared with the same period in 2014. Budget expenditures for the same period rose to TL 78.8 billion, marking a 14.7 percent increase year-on-year. Furthermore, interest expenses reached TL 12 billion for the first two months of 2015, and in February 2014, Turkey ran a budget surplus of TL 1.7 billion. "The impact of the economic slowdown was not felt in the first quarter of the year. Further recovery in domestic demand in the coming month will positively affect budget performance," Şimşek said. Government revenue reached TL 40.2 billion in February 2015, a 16.6 percent increase compared with the same period in 2014. Budget expenditures for the same period rose to TL 42.5 billion, a 30-percent increase year-on-year. The Finance Ministry has estimated that budget expenses for the 2015 fiscal year will reach TL 473 billion while budget income will reach TL 451 billion, resulting in a budget deficit of TL 21 billion. Şimşek forecasted that Turkey will reach its budget deficit goal in 2015. "The number is compatible with our estimate of a TL 21 billion budget deficit for 2015," he said. The government's budget ran a deficit of TL 22.7 billion in 2014.