Timor-Leste “accelerates” public spending in the last quarter of 2014

22 May 2015

The government of Timor-Leste (East Timor) accelerated its budget execution in the last quarter of 2014, having spent in the last three months of the year almost as much as in the previous nine months, according to official budget execution figures released Friday in Dili.

The accounts are based on the budget implementation report for the 3rd quarter of 2014 released by the National Treasury Directorate of the Timor-Leste Finance Ministry and information already published by the Central Bank on budget execution throughout the year.

Friday’s report said that by the end of the third quarter around 50% of the total budget for 2014 had been executed, or US$756.5 million of the total budget of US$1.5 billion.

The Central Bank of Timor-Leste (BCTL) in its annual report also released this month, said that in 2014 91.2 percent of the total budget for the year was executed, or US$1.368 billion, the largest annual public expenditure ever.

These figures show that in the third quarter of the year alone, the Timorese State executed over US$612 million of the state budget.

Year-on-year budgetary execution at the end of September was 16 percentage points higher than the 34 percent recorded by the end of September 2013.

With regard to revenue collection, according to the Finance Ministry report, by the end of September the state had charged 66 percent of the budgeted amount for the year (a total of US$142.4 million).

Despite this, collection of 94.5 percent of the total by September amounted to 3 percent less than in the same period of 2013.

“Goods and services (US$279.9 million in the third quarter and US$199.8 million in the same period of 2013) and Public Transfers (US$199.9 million in the third quarter and US$123.8 million in the same period of 2013) contributed to an increase in expenses and reflect a higher level of budget implementation,” the report said.

“This increased performance in the quarter also led to higher fiscal deficits than in the same period last year,” it noted.

The government had budgeted expenses of US$1.5 billion and oil revenues of US$166.2 million in 2014.

The total fiscal deficit of US$1.3338 billion was funded “through transfers from the Oil Fund in the amount of US$902.9 million, by loans to the tune of US$31.1 million and withdrawal of cash reserves from the Fund for Infrastructure and the Timor-Leste Consolidated Fund (CFET), totalling US$399.8 million.”(macauhub/TL)