CAIRO: Egypt’s overall budget deficit surged to 261.8 billion EGP ($33.43 billion,) 10.8 percent of GDP in 11 months from July to May of FY 2014/2015 (ended June 30,) according to Finance Ministry’s monthly report.
The figure is higher than a 9.5 percent gap for the same period a year earlier, and also up from the FY 2014/2015 target of 10 percent.
“The rise was mainly driven by government’s increasing spending on wages, subsidies and socail programs amid efforts to achieve social justice,” said the ministry.
During the said period, revenues recorded 350.1 billion EGP from 337.8 billion EGP, while expenditures amounted to 601.4 billion, compared to 519.7 billion EGP, according to the report.
The total shortfall for FY2014/2015 is projected to exceed 11 percent.
Egypt has adopted a five-year macroeconomic plan aimed to reduce the budget gap to (8- 8.5 percent) by 2018/2019, by applying subsidy reforms and introducing new taxes.
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ratified earlier in July the state budget for FY 2015/2016, after being revised to slash the projected deficit to 8.9 percent of GDP.