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PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR FINANCE
The Ministry for Finance welcomes the publication of the NSO’s Government Finance Data for January to December 2018. The data shows that payment flows on recurrent expenditure and revenues actually received by the government through taxation, both grew well in line with the nominal growth of the economy, and so remained sustainable.
Taxpayers can be assured that the revenue streams are not running dry and they face no problem in sustaining the Government budget. On the contrary, never have revenue streams been so ample due to what the Commission calls “the tax-rich composition of growth”. This is contributing to the reduction of the National Debt bequeathed to this government by an irresponsible Nationalist government. Furthermore, for the first time in many decades the country is slowly building a wealth fund which is intended as a gift to posterity with its long-term investments in social areas.
Minister for Finance Edward Scicluna states, “Contrary to what the Opposition spokesperson Dr Mario Demarco implied through his statement, the data does nowhere show any “reckless spending” or “serious shortfall” in government finances. The lack of proper reading of basic national financial statistics by the Opposition is once again very telling.”
As the first paragraph of the NSO Newsletter states that “The Consolidated Fund data, presented in this news release, is the starting point for the compilation of the General Government fiscal balance in line with ESA 2010 methodologies. The data covers only central government and does not cover the more than 50 Extra-budgetary Units, nor the local government accounts. Moreover, significant cash flow mismatches between outlays and receipts of EU Funds have to be considered.
The data published by the Treasury is therefore indicative and in no way can it be relied on as giving the full picture of accrued general government revenue and expenditure needed to conclude whether Malta ended the year in deficit or in surplus. Those figures we are told by the National Statistical Office in the said newsletter have been computed and have now been submitted to the Commission by means of the Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP) Notification for the years 2015-2018, which data will be published locally on the 23rd of April.
“I can assure everyone that once again the Labour Government will not disappoint the taxpayer. When we say that the public finances are on track, we mean it”, concluded the Minister.