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Fiscal deficit marginally crosses revised target of 6%
May, 30th 2009

The Centre's fiscal deficit- the gap between its spending and most of its receipts, marginally crossed the revised target of 6% of the country's total economic output in 2008-09, the government's internal auditor said here.

The fiscal deficit stood at Rs 3,30,114 crore, which is 6.2% of the revised gross domestic product (GDP) for the year- Rs 53,32,753.

With the economy slowing down under the impact of global financial crisis, the government announced tax cuts and increased its expenditure to boost the economy. As a result, fiscal deficit target for 2008-09 was revised upwards to 6% from the earlier estimate of 2.5%.

The actual expenditure of the Centre stood at Rs 8,81,469 crore, lower by 2.2% from Rs 9,00,953 crore projected in revised estimates, said the Controller General of Accounts (CGA).

Revenues stood at Rs 5,44,651 crore, missing the revised target of Rs 5,62,173 crore by 3.1%.

The Centre's tax kitty fell short of the target by 3.9% at Rs 4,47,726 crore, as the government cut excise duty by 6% and service tax by 2%, among other sector-specific taxes, in three stimulus packages.

The government's revenue deficit, which is the shortfall of current revenues over current expenditure like salaries, also overshot the revised target by 2.4%.

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