The government’s budget deficit fell 40.43 percent or P48.9 billion in August to P72.0 billion from P120.9 billion a year ago, on the back of a 28.23-percent growth in revenue collections and slower expenditure expansion of 6.39 percent, the Bureau of the Treasury said Friday.
The latest data brought the cumulative budget deficit in the first eight months to P833 billion, down 13.06 percent or P125.2 billion from P958.2 billion in the same period last year.
Michael Ricafort, chief economist of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., said attributed the August budget deficit to the further reopening of the economy towards greater normalcy.
“The narrower budget deficit from January-August 2022 by 13 percent to -P833 billion vs. P958.2 billion in the same period last year may have to do with the further re-opening and no more large scale lockdowns so far this year, compared to some pockets of hard lockdowns in 2021, thereby increasing the government’s tax revenue collections with more business and industries re-opening and operating at much higher capacity,” Ricafort said.
Data showed that revenue collection in August reached P332.4 billion, up from P259.3 billion in the same month last year. The Treasury said 93 percent (P308.4 billion) were from taxes while the remaining 7 percent (P24.0 billion) were non-tax collections which respectively grew by 27.27 percent and 42.06 percent.
The cumulative collection amounting to P2.4 trillion as of end-August also surpassed the previous year’s performance by 18.09 percent or P362.9 billion and made up 72 percent of the P3.3 trillion full-year program.
Collection by the Bureau of Internal Revenue reached P228.9 billion in August, 23.03 percent or P42.9 billion better than the figure recorded a year ago with the highest monthly nominal growth for the first eight months of the year.
The total uptake of P1.6 trillion in the first eight months was also up by 12.25 percent or P170.2 billion from the previous year’s outcome of P1.4 trillion.
The BIR already collected 65 percent of its full-year program of P2.4 trillion.
The Bureau of Customs recorded its highest year-on-year growth for the year of 47.84 percent in August with actual revenue of P78.9 billion (net of P188.0 million tax refund).
The Customs’ overall collection as of end-August reached P559.2 billion, 35.64 percent or P146.9 billion higher than a year ago. The cumulative performance also represented 78 percent of its 2022 goal of P721.5 billion
The Bureau of the Treasury’s income in August slightly went up to P4.9 billion from the previous year’s P4.7 billion on higher national government share payments from Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. and BTr investment income. This improved the cumulative collection to P122.4 billion, up by 22.50 percent or almost P23.0 billion year-on-year, and was already double the P61.2 billion original full-year program.
Collection from other offices including privatization proceeds and fees and charges in August advanced to P19.1 billion from last year’s P12.2 billion.
The P115.5-billion cumulative collection similarly outperformed the previous year’s outturn by 29.26 percent or P26.1 billion.
Meanwhile, expenditures grew by 6.39 percent or P24.3 billion to P404.5 billion from P380.2 billion a year ago on higher national tax allotment transfers and interest payments. The P3.2-trillion cumulative expenditures were 8.02 percent or P237.7 billion higher than a year ago and accounted for 65 percent of the P5.0 billion programmed for the year.
Netting out interest payments, the August primary deficit was recorded at P41.3 billion, reflecting a 57.46 percent or P55.7 billion drop from the previous year. The cumulative primary deficit as of end-August contracted to P492.9 billion, down by 26.06 percent or P173.8 billion year-on-year.