By Ernesto Cooke
Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves reporting on the nation’s fiscal situation, said, as of the end of August 2016, revenue and grants totalled 382.9 million dollars.
Gonsalves said last year’s figure for the same period was 353.9 million dollars an increase in total revenue and grants of 8.4 percent.
Of the total revenue and grants current revenue collected up to the end of August 2016 was 364.7 million dollars, which is an increase over the number for the comparable period last year of 333.1 million.
The current revenue has shown an increase of 9.5 percent as compared to last year.
Gonsalves said that taxes and incomes went up, taxes on property,taxes on goods and services, not every single category on each of these groups would have gone up, however, am talking about a global number on each of these headings.
The Prime Minister said taxes on international trade went up, for instance, the domestic VAT went up by 9 percent while VAT on international trade went up by 3 percent.
Capital Grants went up relative to last year. The government received 70.1 million dollars compared to 9.3 million dollars last year.
Total expenditure both for current and capital increased, total expenditure went up by 2.7 percent from 383.8 million in 2015 to 393.5 million in 2016.
Current expenditure went up by 3.8 percent from 336.2 million dollars to 349.1 million dollars in 2016.
Gonsalves announced that wages and salaries went up by 4.4 percent.
Capital expenditure as of August 2016 is 44.4 million dollars and the capital expenditure for 2015 was 47 million dollars slightly down.
As a result of these improvements, Government has attained a current account surplus of 15.5 million dollars, Compared to a deficit last year of 3 million dollars.
An overall deficit of 10.6 million dollars compared with an overall deficit this time last year of 30 million dollars.
Gonsalves said the fiscal operations of Government have improved, however, we are not out of the woods.
The Prime Minister said Government would have to be careful with what is spent along with matters of efficiency.