Initial budget surplus of EGP 20.8 billion in first half of FY 2018/19: Egypt's finance minister
MENA, Ahram Online, , Monday 21 Jan 2019

Egypt achieved an initial budget surplus of EGP 20.8 billion during the first half of the 2018/19 fiscal year, Finance Minister Mohamed Maait said on Monday.

The 2018/19 budget's expenditures total EGP 1.41 trillion, and projected revenues are targeted at EGP 990 billion.

In a press statement, the minister described these figures as good results, saying that this initial surplus represents 0.4 percent of the GDP, compared to an initial deficit of 0.3 percent of the GDP in the same period of the previous fiscal year.

Maait explained that the positive figures are partly due the government's policy of encouraging investments in infrastructure in order to attract private sector business activity to all vital economic sectors.

The 2018/19 budget aims to reduce the debt rate of state bodies to 93 percent of the GDP, while achieving a real growth rate of 5.8 percent, he added.

In 2017/18 fiscal year, Egypt's budget deficit recorded 9.8 percent of GDP down from 10.9 percent in the previous fiscal year, the lowest level below the 10 percent benchmark for six years,

It was also the first time in 15 years for the final state budget account to record a primary surplus of EGP 4.4 billion.

The 2017/2018 primary balance figures do not take into consideration interset payments on outstanding government debts for the fiscal year, which stood at EGP 438 billion.