Budget aims to reduce fiscal deficit to 3.5% of GDP

The budget 2019, which is to be presented to Parliament on February 05, will be prepared with a focus to reduce the fiscal deficit to 3.5 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and maintain the public debt below 70 percent of the GDP, the Finance and Mass Media Ministry said in a statement.
The budget would also focus on increasing the government revenue to 17 percent of the GDP, while limiting the recurrent expenditure 15 percent of the GDP and maintain the capital expenditure around 5.5 percent of the GDP.The Finance and Mass Media Ministry said they will strive to maintain the increase in government revenue, which had shown growth since 2015.In 2015, the government revenue as a percentage of GDP was 13.3 percent, and it went up to 14.2 percent in 2016 and 13.8 percent in 2017.
The ministry said increased tax income and exports helped the government to increase its revenue.The Expropriation Bill for the year 2019 is expected to be presented to the Cabinet of Ministers this week by the Finance and Mass Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera.The second reading of the budget 2019 will take place on March 05 and the third reading will be on March 13, which will be followed by a vote in Parliament on April 04.