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[WASHINGTON] Malaysia's budget deficit could fall below 3 per cent of gross domestic product in 2015, the International Monetary Fund said on Monday after it concluded a mission to the Southeast Asian nation.
Malaysia narrowed the fiscal deficit to 3.9 per cent of GDP in 2013, and Prime Minister Najib Razak wants to further trim the gap to 3.5 per cent this year and 3 per cent in 2015, heading toward a balanced budget by 2020.
To help do that, the country announced it would end subsidies on petrol and diesel from Dec 1. "Malaysia is on track to achieve the 2014 federal budget deficit target of 3.5 per cent, down from 3.9 per cent in 2013. With fuel subsidy removal locking in the impact of lower oil prices, the mission projects that the deficit could decline below 3 per cent of GDP in 2015," the Fund said in a statement.