No more borrowing this fiscal: Mayaram

The Finance Ministry on Saturday ruled out more market borrowings during the remaining period of the fiscal saying it will stick to 5.3 percent fiscal deficit target.

Updated: Feb 09, 2013, 20:52 PM IST

Mumbai: The Finance Ministry on Saturday ruled out more market borrowings during the remaining period of the fiscal saying it will stick to 5.3 percent fiscal deficit target.

"We will not go into the market for additional borrowings this fiscal and will be able to keep the fiscal deficit at 5.3 per cent of GDP," Economic Affairs Secretary Arvind Mayaram said here this evening.

He was talking to reporters on the sidelines of an event to launch the Financial Technologies-promoted MCX-SX, which is the third major stock exchange.

The government has initially budgeted a marketing borrowing target of Rs 5,13,590 crore or 5.1 percent fiscal deficit of GDP for this fiscal, which was later revised upwards to 5.3 percent in October, increasing the market borrowing by another Rs 23,000 crore.

On the revenue side, with three divestments, the government has already met nearly 73 percent (around Rs 21,700 crore out of Rs 30,000 crore) of its divestment target and is confident of meeting nearly 90 per cent with three more sell-offs in SAIL, Nalco and MMTC in the remaining days of the fiscal.

With the government in expenditure cutting mode, various ministries are bracing for reduction in their annual budgets for the year 2013-14 which could be even up to 24 percent of this fiscal.

The CGA data revealed that during April-December 2012, the revenue receipts stood at Rs 5,70,536 crore or 61 percent of the estimate. The performance on revenue mop up front during the period at 61 percent of the estimate was lower than 63.1 percent achieved during April-December 2011.

The government is eyeing Rs 935,685 crore revenue this fiscal. Tax collection (Rs 4,84,156 crore) slipped to 62.8 percent of the Budget estimate compared to 63.3 percent achieved in the same period last year.

Government receipts during the period totalled Rs 5,86,424 crore while the expenditure worked out at Rs 9,91,123 crore.

Finance Minister P Chidambaram is on an overdrive to meet the projected 5.3 percent fiscal deficit target. The efforts include an over 20 percent cut back by all the ministries from their budgeted expenditure plan, apart from aiming to mop up additional revenues.

Chidambaram has reiterated that said the government would stick to the 5.3 percent fiscal deficit target this fiscal.

Last year's Budget had pegged fiscal deficit at 5.1 percent, which Chidambaram had marginally revised upwards to 5.3 percent. However, in October he had said the government would bring down the revenue-expenditure gap to 4.8 percent next fiscal.

On January 31, the government had said the fiscal deficit touched 78.8 percent of the estimates by the end of December, which is lower than the 92.3 percent of the Budget estimates in the same period previous fiscal.

In absolute terms, the fiscal deficit or gap between expenditure and revenue receipts stood at Rs 4,04,699 crore at the end of December, according to the data released by Controller General of Accounts (CGA).

The government has estimated the fiscal deficit for 2012-13 at Rs 5,13,590 crore.

The improvement on the fiscal deficit front in comparison to the same period a year ago is attributed to government's measures of rationalisation of expenditure including 10 percent mandatory cut on non-plan expenditure.

Besides, steps have been taken to cut the subsidy outgo on petroleum products.

The expenditure during the period was 66.5 percent of the budget estimate as against 71.3 percent in April-December last fiscal.

The government has rolled out the fiscal deficit road-map for the 12th Plan and estimates fiscal deficit to come down to 3 percent by FY'17.