Natural disasters don’t impact fiscal stability: FPO

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BANGKOK, April 26 – Natural disasters that broke out domestically and overseas have not affected Thailand’s fiscal stability, according to Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) Director-General Naris Chaiyasoot.

Mr Naris said the country’s fiscal position was strong in the first half of fiscal 2011 which began Oct 1 last year. As of the end of March, the government’s fiscal coffer contained at Bt114.39 billion.

In that period, the government earned revenues and fill its coffer by Bt784.57 billion, which is Bt100.45 billion or 14.7 per cent higher than in the same period last year, due to the increased collection of taxes credited to continued economic expansion.

Simultaneously, budget disbursements totaled Bt1.16 trillion, up Bt225.15 billion or 24.1 per cent more than in the corresponding period in the year before. It resulted in a budget deficit of Bt374.59 billion, up from Bt249.9 billion the same period the previous year, he said.

When combined with the off-budget deficit of Bt53.94 billion, this factor caused the government to register a cash balance deficit of Bt428.54 billion, down Bt106.69 billion or 33.1 per cent from the Bt321.6 billion achieved in the same period last year.

The government sought Bt113.61 billion in loans to offset the shortfall, resulting in a drop in the deficit to Bt314.94 billion.

“The natural disasters that occurred in Japan and the southern region of Thailand had a little impact on revenue collection,” Mr Naris said. “Because of this, we are confident the county’s fiscal position will remain able throughout this fiscal year.”