Fiscal deficit to be brought down to below 4.5 pc by 2025-26: FM

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Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman with Minister of State Bhagwat Kishanrao Karad and officials poses for photographs on her arrival at Parliament for the presentation of the Union Budget 2023-24, in New Delhi, Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023 | Photo: PTI

New Delhi: Fiscal deficit would be brought down to below 4.5 per cent by 2025-26, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Wednesday.

She also said that tax receipts for the next fiscal are budgeted at Rs 23.3 lakh crore and states would be allowed 3.5 per cent of GDP as fiscal deficit.

To finance the fiscal deficit in 2023-24, net market borrowing from dated securities is estimated at Rs 11.8 lakh crore, Sitharaman said while presenting the Union Budget for 2023-24 in the Lok Sabha.

She retained the fiscal deficit target of 6.4 per cent in the revised estimate for FY2022-23 and reduced it to 5.9 per cent for the next fiscal. The government had pegged the fiscal deficit at at 6.4 per cent of the GDP for the current financial year.

The fiscal deficit or the gap between expenditure and revenue for 2022-23 is estimated to be Rs 16,61,196 crore. The country's fiscal deficit was projected higher at 6.9 per cent for 2021-22 as against 6.8 per cent estimated earlier.

The Revised Estimates for 2021-22 indicate a fiscal deficit of Rs 15,91,089 crore as against the Budget Estimates of Rs 15,06,812 crore.

The minister also announced a new savings scheme, Mahila Samman Savings Certificate, for two years to 2025 with a maximum deposit limit of Rs 2 lakh and an interest rate of 7.5 per cent.

She added that 50-year interest-free loans to state governments have to be spent on capital expenditure within 2023-24.

The minister announced that monthly income scheme limit would be doubled to Rs 9 lakh and Rs 15 lakh for joint accounts. The finance minister said that indirect tax proposals would boost green mobility and electric vehicles (EVs).


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