Bloomberg: Bulgarian 2010 Budget Deficit to Be Below Target
Bulgaria’s 2010 budget deficit will be below the government’s target and among the five lowest in the 27-nation European Union, Finance Minister Simeon Djankov said today in Sofia.
“The November budget data was good,” Djankov told reporters in Sofia today. “This leads us to expect that the annual data will be better than the projections in the revised budget both for the fiscal reserve and the budget deficit.”
The final figure for the 2010 gap will be released later in the month, he said. Bulgaria’s Cabinet revised its budget gap target to 4 percent of gross domestic product on May 26, while the central bank estimated the gap at 4.8 percent of GDP. Bulgaria had a 36.5 million lev ($23.5 million) budget surplus in November, which narrowed the 11-month gap to 1.87 billion lev.
The EU’s poorest country in terms of per-capita GDP is emerging from its worst recession in more than a decade after a three-year lending boom stalled and foreign investment dried up during the global credit crisis. Its economy grew 0.5 percent in third quarter.
Bulgaria’s fiscal reserve was “slightly above” 6 billion lev, higher than the projected 4.5 billion lev in the revised budget, Djankov said.
“Bulgaria’s 2010 budget deficit will be among the four or five lowest in the European Union,” Djankov said.
The government expects the economy to grow 3.6 percent this year, driven mainly by exports, which will help narrow the budget gap to below the EU limit of 3 percent of GDP.
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