Budget 2018: Jaitley raises fiscal deficit target to 3.5% for FY18
India's fiscal deficit stands at Rs 6,12,105 crore in just eight months of FY19, overshooting the budgeted estimate (BE) target by 112% for the current financial year.
Looking at the fiscal position currently, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley during Budget 2018 speech has increased India's fiscal deficit target by 30 basis points to 3.5% for entire FY18.
Jaitly has estimated fiscal deficit target at 3.5% of GDP by end of current fiscal, while the government expects to bring down this target to 3.3% in next fiscal (FY19).
Last year, Jaitley remained firm on its borrowing and fiscal deficit targets for this financial year, hinting that it has no plans to relax spending goals to prop up growth as of now.
The government had targetted to achieve fiscal deficit of 3.2% of GDP in FY18 during previous budget 2017.
Interestingly, economists lay out different fiscal position for India in FY18 and FY19.
Earlier, Edelweiss Financial Services stated that India's fiscal deficit in FY18 is likely to be at 3.4% of the gross domestic product (GDP).
Analysts at Edelweiss had said, "Continuing of path of fiscal discipline, the government is set to utilise its accumulated goodwill of fiscal discipline by missing its FY18 estimates. If it choose to meet its FY18 number by the way of delaying subsidy payments the FY19 number of 3% appears challenged. However a 20 basis points slip for FY19 would likely be growth positive and would still appear to be in line with broader discipline."
Last week, Morgan Stanley predicted India's fiscal deficit to increase to 3.5% of GDP in 2018-19, considering the upcoming state elections in 2018, and general election in May 2019 and weak private investment, concerns have emerged over the government's fiscal position.
Morgan said, "We expect an acceleration in expenditure growth and a wider fiscal deficit in FY2019, but believe that the impact on the inflation outlook should be relatively muted."
India's fiscal deficit stands at Rs 6,12,105 crore in just eight months of FY18, overshooting the budgeted estimate (BE) target by 112% for the current financial year.
The government has estimated Rs 5,46,532 crore of fiscal deficit for FY18. The fiscal deficit during the same period of the last year stood negative at 85.8%.