Jordan's budget gap widens six fold to USD 391mn in January-April 2013

By bne IntelliNews June 26, 2013

Jordan's state budget deficit expanded to JOD 278mn (USD 391mn) in January-April 2013 from JOD 39mn the year before due to surging spending, daily Al-Rai reported on June 26, citing data from the finance ministry. The latter has not released an official statement yet.

Revenue (including grants) rose 2.2% y/y to JOD 1.855bn and spending climbed 15% to JOD 2.133bn. Excluding grants, which totalled JOD 214mn over the period, budget income shrank 8.2% y/y to JOD 1.641bn.

Jordan expects to get JOD 850mn (USD 1.2bn) worth of foreign grants in 2013, Planning and International Cooperation Minister Ibrahim Saif has recently said. Foreign grants fell to a decade-low of 1.5% of GDP in 2012 from 5.9% in 2011, according to S&P.

Spending was boosted by higher current expenditures (up 10.4% y/y) and capital spending (up 103.6%) mainly due to a low prior-year base.

Jordan’s budget deficit will shrink to 4.8% of GDP in 2013 from 8.2% the year before, the IMF forecasts. Higher grants receivables, austerity measures and falling energy imports will help Jordan improve its external balances in 2013. 

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