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News : Irish Economy Last Updated: Apr 15, 2014 - 11:07 AM

Irish Economy: Budget deficit was 7.2% in 2013
By Finfacts Team
Apr 14, 2014 - 5:32 PM

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Irish Economy: The CSO today published the government finance statistics tables for 2013 and the figures show that the General Government Deficit continues to fall and stood at 7.2% in 2013 - - an improvement on the 2012 position of €13.44bn  (8.2% of GDP).

Government revenue increased from €56.62bn in 2012 to €58.87bn in 2013 while expenditure increased from €69.84bn to €70.37bn over the same period. The increase in expenditure was mainly in relation to interest payments and current and capital transfer payments, partially offset by reductions in expenditure on pay, purchase of goods and services and consumption of fixed capital (depreciation).

Taxes and social contributions formed by far the largest component of revenue over the period, representing just under 88% of total government revenue in 2013. Social benefits accounted for just over 40% of government spending in 2012 and 2013.

General Government Gross Debt at 123.7% of GDP in 2013

The gross debt of General Government stood at €202.92bn at the end of 2013 - - up from €192.48bn at the end of 2012. The corresponding percentages of GDP were 123.7 % and 117.4%, respectively.

General Government Net Debt for 2013 amounted to €161.22bn or 98.3% of GDP. This net debt figure is obtained by deducting the value of the financial assets corresponding to those categories of financial liabilities which comprise General Government Debt from the gross debt figure.

Commenting on the statistics, Michael Noonan, finance minister, said: “Stable public finances are a necessary pre-condition for economic growth and job creation. 2013 is the third consecutive year that Ireland has performed ahead of target and, as outlined in the Medium Term Economic Strategy, the Government is committed to reducing the deficit to below 3% by 2015. Today’s statistics highlight the progress that has been made in restoring order to the public finances. These savings have been implemented in as growth-and-jobs-friendly-manner as possible and it is particularly encouraging that this progress coincides with job creation of 61,000 over the course of 2013.”

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