Estimated budget deficit unchanged at S$11b despite changes in revenue, expenditure

Janice Heng
Published Mon, Jul 5, 2021 · 04:36 PM

ESTIMATES of the government's operating revenue and total expenditure have changed since the February Budget, the overall deficit is still expected to be S$11.0 billion or 2.2 per cent of gross domestic product, similar to the previously-announced figure, said Finance Minister Lawrence Wong in Parliament on Monday.

Operating revenue is now projected at S$0.1 billion or 0.2 per cent less than the February estimates, as the recent waiver of rental charges to support businesses during the Heightened Alert phase meant revenue forgone.

Total expenditure is expected to be S$0.5 billion or 0.5 per cent less as increases in operating expenditure for targeted support are offset by decreases in development expenditure, mainly due to construction delays arising from Covid-19.

This means a smaller primary deficit than originally expected.

Special transfers, however, are expected to be S$1 billion higher, due to extended Covid-19 support measures such as the Jobs Support Scheme and rental relief.

This would have meant an overall larger budget deficit of S$11.6 billion, up from S$11 billion originally.

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But some S$0.6 billion in development expenditure will be freed up due to capitalisation of the amount, under the Significant Infrastructure Government Loan Act (SINGA).

This means the revised overall fiscal deficit is S$11.0 billion - unchanged compared from February's estimates.

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