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Spain budget deficit continues lower: data

Published on 23/11/2010

Spain's central government public deficit was down nearly 50 percent in October at 31.26 billion euros or just under three percent of Gross Domestic Product, the economy ministry said Tuesday.

The deficit shrank 47.3 percent in October to 2.96 percent of GDP, compared with 59.31 billion euros (81 billion dollars) and 5.63 percent a year earlier.

Spain earlier this year adopted an austerity programme to put its strained public finances in order so as to bring them into line with eurozone rules and prevent a spike in the cost it must pay to raise fresh cash on the money markets to finance its debt and spending.

The ministry said the October figures were in line with overall targets for the budget, with tax income up more than 25 percent so far this year and spending cut by three percent.

Spain’s 2011 budget cuts spending by 7.9 percent.

The central government deficit does not include regional government spending which is a major component in the country’s overall public finances.

Nationally, the government is aiming to reduce the public deficit to 9.3 percent of GDP this year, from 11.1 percent in 2009, then to 6.0 percent next year and 3.0 percent — the eurozone limit — in 2013.