The actual extent of Estonia's 2023 state budget deficit is reported now at 3 percent of Gross Domestic Product, daily Postimees reports, in line with late-year forecasts and taking into account many budgetary items which get reconciled only in the final month of the year.
Actual revenues for January to October 2023 were €25 million lower than projected, meaning a "minor deficit" developed toward the end of the year, a phenomenon which was not unexpected LINK.
Ministry of Finance spokesperson Kadri Klaos told the Riigikogu's state budget control select committee Monday that as of October, the actual budget deficit was 1.5 percent of annual GDP, reaching nearly 2 percent, the following month.
Revenue inflows from labor taxes, social tax and personal income tax in the first ten months of last year was higher than a year earlier, she declared, putting the salary fund, or the average salary, growth at around 9 percent as of October, even has workplace availability had fallen by a fraction of a percent.
Alcohol excise duty, saw greater stockpiling in November and December, exceeding the ministry's forecast by a few million euros, she added, while VAT receipts had decreased as of last October, and the decline continued in the final months of the year – implying that this gives the lie to expectations that the two-percentage point VAT hike which came into effect on January 1 would lead to increased consumption in November and December (in fact many retailers simply upped their prices in anticipation of the VAT rate rise and ahead of the fact – ed.).
Editor: Andrew Whyte