Malta: Debt levels top €9 billion despite end of pandemic assistance

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Government debt has topped €9 billion, NSO data has shown.

By end of April, the State has accumulated €9,163.0 million of debt, an increase of €630.6 million when compared to 2022. The increase reported under Malta Government Stocks (€781.2 million) was the main contributor to the rise in debt. Higher debt was also reported under Euro coins issued in the name of the Treasury (€5.1 million). This increase in debt was partially offset by a decrease in the 62+ Malta Government Savings Bond (€99.9 million), Treasury Bills (€20.0 million) and Foreign Loans (€0.1 million). Finally, higher holdings by government funds in Malta Government Stocks resulted in a decrease in debt of €35.6 million.

On a yearly basis, by the end of April 2023, the Government’s Consolidated Fund reported a deficit of €192.6 million.
Between January and April 2023, Recurrent Revenue amounted to €1,890.8 million, €295.6 million higher than the €1,595.3 million reported a year earlier. The largest increase was recorded under Income Tax (€179.2 million), followed by Grants (€71.9 million), Value Added Tax (€33.0 million) and Social Security (€15.9 million).

Total expenditure by the end of April 2023 stood at €2,083.5 million, €99.2 million higher than the previous year.
During the reference period, Recurrent Expenditure totalled €1,844.0 million, an increase of €73.9 million in comparison to the €1,770.1 million reported at the end of April 2022. The main contributor to this increase was a €31.0 million rise reported under Contributions to Government Entities. Higher contributions were, among others, made towards Mental Health Services (€6.9 million), Malta Tourism Authority (€6.1 million), Resource Support and Services Ltd (€5.0 million) and Malta Enterprise (€2.9 million). The rise in outlay was mostly offset by drops witnessed under Pandemic assistance schemes (€82.5 million) and Economic stimulus payment (€48.1 million).

The interest component of the public debt servicing costs totalled €66.0 million, an increase of €11.2 million when compared to the previous year.

Between January and April 2023, Government’s capital spending amounted to €173.5 million, €14.1 million higher when compared to the corresponding period in 2022. This increase resulted from higher expenditure towards National Identity Management Systems (€7.0 million) and Property, plant and equipment (€6.4 million).

The difference between total revenue and expenditure resulted in a deficit of €192.6 million being reported in the Government’s Consolidated Fund at the end of April 2023. Compared to the same period in 2022, there was a decrease in deficit of €196.4 million. This difference mirrors an increase in total Recurrent Revenue (€295.6 million), partly offset by a rise in total expenditure, which consists of Recurrent Expenditure (€73.9 million), Interest (€11.2 million) and Capital Expenditure (€14.1 million).

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