Greek state budget recorded lower-than-expected deficit in 2020

Greek state budget recorded a lower than expected deficit in 2020 offering a breathe as the ministry tries to implement its fiscal policy in 2021. A Finance ministry report said the budget deficit totaled 22.808 billion euros last year, down 1.5 billion from budget provisions. The ministry attributed this development to lower spending (605 million euros) and to the receipt of ANFAs worth 644 million euros in December. The ministry said it was optimistic that 2021 will prove a better year compared with 2020 and noted that it will continue its support measures until March-April.

More specifically, the state budget recorded a primary deficit of 18.198 billion euros in 2020, from a primary surplus of 5.017 billion in 2019. Net revenue totaled 47.361 billion euros, up 2.0 pct from budget estimates. Regular budget revenue was 53.033 billion euros, up 2.4 pct from budget targets for the year, while tax revenue totaled 43.254 billion euros, up 473 million from targets. Tax returns amounted to 5.672 billion euros in 2020, up 312 million form targets, while Public Investment Programme revenue totaled 5.540 billion euros, up 74 million from targets.

Budget spending totaled 70.169 billion euros in 2020, down 0.9 pct from targets, with Public Investment Programme spending totaling 10.647 billion euros, up 226 million from targets. Budget spending were up 14.904 billion euros compared with 2019.

In December, budget revenue totaled 5.235 billion euros, up 100 million from monthly targets. Tax revenue was down 43 million from targets to 4.119 billion euros, while tax returns totaled 608 million euros, up 202 million from targets. Budget spending totaled 9.791 billion euros in December up 1.8 pct from targets.