Q3 fiscal deficit nears government full year target

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 23) — The government's aggressive spending program remains within target.

The government's fiscal deficit, or the spending beyond the revenue, is at ₱378.2 billion, according to the Bureau of Treasury (BOT).

This is 72 percent of the ₱523.7 billion target deficit for 2018.

Meanwhile, the budget deficit, which includes government debt in its computations as a part of revenue, is at ₱96.2 billion in September. This is almost thrice of the budget deficit of ₱36.9 billion logged in the same month last year.

Total revenue for the month was at ₱202.4 billion, ₱2.3 billion more than what was collected for the same month last year. These are sourced primarily from taxes collected by agencies like the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and Bureau of Customs (BOC).

While collections from the BOC were up by 27 percent at ₱51.1 billion, collections from the BIR reduced by 8 percent at P130.6 billion as it continues to pay its settlement fees with tobacco firm, Mighty Corporation, from last year's tax dispute.

Government spending in September totalled ₱298.6 billion, higher by 26 percent than the ₱237 billion spent on the same month last year.

"Productive government spending accelerated to 26% in September, settling at ₱265.9 billion. This led to year to date primary expenditures of ₱2,218.4 billion, reflecting a 26% or ₱452.8 million improvement from last year," the BOT said in a statement.