Deficit reaches $1.9 billion
Real estate transactions
revenues down by ten percent
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Total public deficit stood at $1.9 billion, representing 28 percent of the total expenditure at end-June 2013, according to a report by the Ministry of Finance. The deficit went up by $770 million compared to the first half of 2012.

The total primary surplus reached about $16 million, representing 0.24 percent of overall total expenditure.

Total budget and Treasury revenues collected during the first six months of 2013 reached $4.87 billion, down by 4.24 percent compared to the same period last year. “The decrease in revenue is due to the economic slowdown. People are more cautious and limit their spending,” said Joe Sarrouh, Economic Consultant at Fransabank. Revenues from real estate transactions dropped by ten percent to $245 million. “The decline in the real estate sector is related to the security situation, the decrease in Arab investments, and low Lebanese expatriate transfers,” said Sarrouh. Telecom and Airport revenues also went down by 15 and 60 percent respectively.

Total expenditure, including budget and Treasury, reached $6.78 billion compared to about $6.23 billion last year. Total expenditure excluding public debt servicing reached $4.8 billion compared to $4.13 billion during the same period last year.
Reported by Joelle Nassar
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Date Posted: Sep 18, 2013