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Sultanate’s budget deficit falls by 34 per cent


MUSCAT: The total revenues of the government surged 24.4 per cent to RO 6,677.2 million for the first eight months of 2018, over the same period last year due to a major recovery in oil prices, showed provisional statistics released by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI). Budget deficit fell 34 per cent to RO 1,832.1 million during January-August period of 2018 due to an increase in government revenues driven by high oil income. The budget deficit for the same period of 2017 was much higher at RO 2,776.4 million.

As a result of rise in oil prices, the net oil revenues of the government jumped by 35.8 per cent to RO 4,019.3 million during January-August period of 2018, from RO 2,960.8 million for the same period last year, the report added. Revenues from natural gas rose by 25 per cent to RO 1,198.5 million, while customs duty and corporate income tax contributed RO 154.1 million and RO 403 million, respectively during the period. In addition, capital revenue shot up to RO 115.5 million during the first eight months of 2018.

As far as expenditure is concerned, the total public expenditure increased by 8.5 per cent to RO 7,968.2 million for the first eight months between January and August 2018. This is against an expenditure of RO 7,342.7 million for the same period last year, showed NCSI report. Current expenditure rose by 11 per cent to RO 5,807.1 million, while investment expenditure fell by 2.5 per cent to RO 1,715.6 million in the first eight months of 2018, the report added. The total public expenditure in 2017 stood at RO 12,273.7 million, with a total revenue of RO 8,514.1 million, leaving a deficit of RO 3,759.6 million. — ONA

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