Budget posts near $6B deficit in Q1

ANADOLU AGENCY
ANKARA
Published

Turkey's central government budget balance saw a deficit of TL 23.2 billion ($5.98 billion) in the January-April period, the Finance Ministry announced yesterday. According to an official statement, Turkey's budget revenues stood at TL 232 billion Turkish liras from January to April, up 17.3 percent on a yearly basis. In the same period, the budget expenses amounted to TL 255.2 billion, marking an 18.3 percent annual rise.

Excluding interest payments, the central government budget balance saw a surplus of TL 2.2 billion over the same period.

The average U.S. dollar/Turkish lira exchange rate in the first four months this year was around 3.88, according to the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.

In the four-month period, interest payments recorded a 15.12 percent yearly hike to reach TL 25.4 billion ($6.5 billion), while tax revenues amounted to TL 190.8 billion, marking a 20.3 percent annual rise.

"Positive developments in the January-April period indicate that the year-end tax revenues will exceed our targets," Finance Minister Naci Ağbal said in the statement.

In 2017, Turkey's budget deficit/gross domestic product (GDP) ratio was around 1.5 percent - below the targets noted in the country's Medium-Term Program (MTP). According to the MTP, the budget deficit/GDP ratio target is 1.9 percent this year, 1.8 percent next year, and 1.6 percent for 2020.

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