Turkey runs $14B budget deficit in H1

By Tuba Sahin

ANKARA (AA) – Turkey's central government budget balance posted a deficit of 78.6 billion Turkish liras (some $14 billion) in the first half of the current year, the Treasury and Finance Ministry announced on Tuesday.

The country's budget revenues totaled 403 billion Turkish liras ($71.7 billion) in the first six months of this year, up 14% year-on-year, data showed.

Budget expenditures rose 20.5% to nearly 481.6 billion Turkish liras ($86 billion) — marking a 78.6 billion Turkish liras (some $14 billion) deficit.

The budget balance, excluding interest payments, saw a deficit of 27.8 billion Turkish liras ($5 billion) from January to June.

Official figures showed that tax revenues rose 4.4% to 307.7 billion Turkish liras ($54.8 billion), while interest payments were 50.7 billion Turkish liras ($9 billion) over the same period.

– Monthly figures

In June, the budget balance also saw a deficit of 12 billion Turkish liras ($2 billion).

Last month, Turkey's budget revenues totaled 55.5 billion Turkish liras ($9.6 billion), up 7.6% on a yearly basis, according to official data.

Budget expenditures in June were 67.5 billion Turkish liras ($11.6 billion), a decrease of around 12.5% annually.

Excluding interest payments, the central government budget balance saw a deficit of 7.7 billion Turkish liras ($1.3 billion) last month.

The average U.S. dollar/Turkish lira exchange rate in June was 5.8, while one dollar was trading for 5.6 liras on average in the first half of this year.