The Finance Ministry announced Monday a budget deficit of some 529.5 million leva, or 0.8 per cent of the GDP forecast, for 2009. The deficit is based on monthly reports on the cash utilization of the budget of first-level spending units.
The budgetary position of this country at the end of 2009 matches the criteria set out in the 2009 National Budget Act and the goals of the fiscal policy, the ministry said.
The December 2009 budget was close to the balanced figure, with a negligible deficit of 31.3 million leva (mostly due to the higher costs of municipalities which enjoy an autonomy and are free to follow or not the government's prescriptions for cost cuts).
Revenues and grants under the consolidated fiscal prorgamme stood at 25,021.6 million leva, or 76.9 per cent of the 2009 budget target. Revenues made up 37.6 per cent of the GDP forecast, against a like figure of 40.9 per cent in 2008.
The total amount of tax revenue (including social and health insurance contributions) for last year stood at 20,171.8 million leva, or 78.4 per cent of the target figure. Direct taxes generated 3,813.5 million, or 77.1 per cent of the year's target. Indirect taxes totalled 10,398.6 million (75.4 per cent of the target), including 6 432,5 from VAT (69 per cent of target), 3,844.5 million from excise duties (90.2 per cent from target) which was down by 207.2 million in nominal terms, or 5.1 per cent, from the year before, and 686.7 million leva from other taxes (69.6 per cent of target). Social and health insurance contributions as of the end of December 2009 stood at 5,273 million leva, or 12.2 below target.
Non-tax revenues totalled 3,523.6 million leva, which was 92.3 per cent of target and was down by 12 per cent from 2008.
Grants in 2009 totalled 1,326.2 million leva and mostly came as payments under the Structural and Cohesion Funds of the EU, the European Agriculture Fund for Rural Development and the European Fisheries Fund.
Expenses in the consolidated budget, including the Bulgarian contribution to the EU budget for 2009 stood at 25,551.2 million which was 84.2 per cent of the annual target (thanks to the cost-cutting measures) and 38.4 per cent of the GDP forecast (against 38.1 per cent in 2008). Last year Bulgaria paid 746.2 million leva as a contribution to the EU budget.
The fiscal reserve as of December 31, 2009, was 7,672.9 million leva.